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Hollywood stars to helm Tim Winton’s film adaptation of Blueback

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Filming is underway in Bremer Bay, Western Australia for a film adaptation of a popular Australian novel, with directors today revealing three Hollywood stars are set to star on the South Coast.

Mia Wasikowska, Radha Mitchell and Eric Bana are confirmed to star in Blueback, which is an adaptation of the award-winning 1997 novel by Western Australian author Tim Winton of the same name.

The stars will be filmed at popular WA destinations, from the Ningaloo Reef on the state’s Mid-West Coast to the Wild South Coast.

Writer and director Robert Connolly (Balibo, Paper Planes) said Blueback was “an iconic Australian story” with a “timely” message about the fragility of the world’s oceans.

A group stands on a coastal setting on a sunny day.  Blue sky, looking towards the sun.  The camera arrow is visible.
Filming for the 2021 film adaptation of Tim Winton Blueback’s novel is underway in Bremer Bay.(Provided: Screenwest)

History puts the environment before the economy

Blueback will be a family-focused film that follows the story of Abby, a child who befriends a wild groper while diving into the ocean.

When Abby realizes the fish is under threat from poachers, she chooses to take matters into her own hands to protect her new friend.

After the book’s release in 1997, Winton said it was written during “a period of personal interest in government.”

“It’s all about balancing the pounds, taking care of ourselves,” he said.

“We’ve been taking from the sea and the land for so long, it’s time for us to give something back.”

Star Power leads the show

Wasikowska, Mitchell and Bana will be alongside other actors, including Clarence Ryan from Western Australia.

Wasikowska may be best known for her role as Alice in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (2010), while Mitchell starred in Man on Fire (2004) and recently starred in the Olympus Has Fallen and London Has Fallen (2013 and 2016) series.

Bana’s filmography includes leading roles in Chopper (2000) and Troy (2004), and more recently The Dry.

A middle aged man with graying hair looks at a camera against a black background (Eric Bana)
Eric Bana stars as Mad Macka in Blueback.(Provided: Screenwest)

Booming Australian Film Industry

Blueback’s production comes after the success of The Dry, an Australian film set in Victoria that peaked at the Australian box office earlier this year.

Its success has made it one of the most successful Australian productions of recent years.

Screenwest CEO Willie Rowe said Blueback would promote “the stunning coastal scenery of the Deep South to the world” and generate a “significant boost” to the regional economies his teams visited during production.

Blueback is the latest in a series of recent productions in the Deep South.

Cinema legends Sam Neill and Michael Caton have spent a lot of time in the area filming the 2020 Rams movie, with extensive filming at Mt Barker.

The 2019 children’s film H is for Happiness was filmed for several weeks in Albany, and in 2018 another adaptation by Tim Winton Breath was filmed in Denmark.

Crews for popular children’s show ABC Itch also returned to Albany late last year to continue filming the show’s second season.

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