puberty blues 2

I appeared on Puberty Blues tonight (Season 2, Ep 7).  I played a drunken dad who abuses Judy Vickers (Claudia Karvan) only to be pegged down a notch or two by husband Martin (Jeremy Lindsay Tailor).  A fun little role where I got to wear the shortest shorts I've worn in a long time!

tricky business

I just spent two days playing a guest role on Channel Nines new TV series Tricky Business.  Obviously I can't give away any details about the show and its story lines but I had a lot of fun playing the role.  My scenes involved series regular Kip Gamblin and he was great to work with.  Look out for 9's new show which airs early to mid 2012.

nsc 2011

I took off to Victoria this week to attend the National Screenwriters' Conference.  Three days of presentations and discussions with successful Australian and international screenwriters.

Shane Brennan is an Australian screenwriter and producer who's experienced a meteoric rise to the top in the cutthroat world of American television drama. Shane is Executive Producer of NCIS, and Creator and Executive Producer of NCIS: Los Angeles, currently the number one and two scripted series on American television, achieving viewer numbers that the U.S media has hailed as 'gravity defying'.

Nicholas Meyer is a U.S screenwriter, director and producer. He is best known for his Oscar nominated screenplay The Seven-Per-Cent-Solution, based on his best selling novel of the same name. He was also nominated for an Emmy for his teleplay, The Night That Panicked America. In recent years Meyer has written the screenplay for The Human Stain and has also teamed with Martin Scorsese to adapt Edmund Morris' biography of Theodore Roosevelt, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt. He is credited for revitalizing the Star Trek franchise and has published The View from the Bridge: Memories of Star Trek and a Life in Hollywood.

Jimmy McGovern is a U.K. television writing legend. Cracker, The Lakes, Hillsborough, Dockers, Priest, The Street - explore different genres, themes and big ideas, but unifying them all, is a specific regional voice rich with the flavours, characters and stories of the north of England working-class. Using The Street as a case study we talk to Jimmy about what informs his choices of subject matter, how he creates characters, themes and structure, and how the culturally specific can find a universal audience. Jimmy's Liverpudlian humour, honesty and generosity are sure to delight, inform and inspire.

With many others speakers, a tribute to the amazing life and work of David Williamson and a dinner among the fig trees, it was a spectacular weekend.  I met Greg MacLean, director of Wolf Creek, and discussed one of my film projects.  Greg inspired me to take the reigns and write and direct the project myself - watch this space!

tick, tick, tick

Last night, the first episode 30 Seconds aired on the ABC.  30 Seconds was produced for Foxtel's Comedy Channel and the ABC picked it up and are playing all six episodes over the next six weeks.  30 Second's executive producer is Andrew Denton and I met him on the set when filming my guest role in the first episode.
Image by 30 Seconds.  Links by 30 Seconds and IMDb

my place

A gorgeous little book has become ABC TV's new 13-part children's drama series.  My Place, based on the award-winning book by Nadia Wheatley and Donna Rawlins, is a captivating series telling the story of one house in South Sydney as told by the children who have lived there for over 130 years.

The series is being produced by the award-winning Australian filmmaker, Penny Chapman (Blue Murder and Brides of Christ).  Joining the line up of child actors in My Place is a stellar cast that includes: Susie Porter (East of Everything and Little Fish), Dan Wyllie (Love My Way and Underbelly), Sacha Horler (Love My Way and Grass Roots), Dan Spielman (Mary Bryant and Tom White), Russell Dykstra (Clubland and Romulus, My Father), Leon Ford (All Saints and Changi) and Hayley McElhinney (Blue Heelers and Young Lions).

The series features a line-up of prominent Australian directors that includes: Jessica Hobbs (Curtin and Love My Way), Samantha Lang (L’idole and The Monkey’s Mask - I appeared in her feature The Well), Catriona McKenzie (RAN: Remote Area Nurse and The Circuit), Shirley Barrett (Love My Way and Walk the Talk) and Shawn Seet (Underbelly and Two Fists One Heart - I worked with him recently on 30:Seconds.)

I was thrilled to be asked to play a small role in the series, donning a wig for the first time ever.  Jessica Hobbs directed the episode I'm in and I was very happy to play husband to Sacha Horler, a friend who studied at NIDA when I did many years ago.
Image by Books Illustrated and links by IMDB.

30 seconds

Today I met Andrew Denton on the set of 30 Seconds.  Andrew is Co-Executive Producer of the new satire which looks closely at the crazy workings of the advertising industry.

'The six part series is the creation of real-life advertising insiders Tim Bullock of Prodigy Films, Justin Drape and Scott Nowell of Sydney agency, Three Drunk Monkeys – the team behind FOXTEL’s recently-successful value-oriented marketing campaign.
A stellar line-up of Australian talent has been assembled for the four-week shoot which is currently taking place in Sydney. The who’s who of the Australian acting industry include, Stephen Curry, Peter O’Brien, Joel Tobeck, Gyton Grantley and Kat Stewart.' Foxtel (More)

I play the marketing manager for a beer manufacturer in the very first episode of the series. This is a must see production. It's not often that it happens but I laughed out loud when reading the episode I appear in. If all six are this good, it's going to be great!
Image by Foxtel.  Links by Foxtel and IMDb.

national screenwriters' conference

I've just spent the last three days in the Barossa Valley at the National Screenwriters' Conference - fantastic. This is the first time I've thrown myself into the writers' arena and it was well worth it.  I learnt a great deal about the art and met some industry greats: Mike Bullen - Cold Feet and Life Begins creator and writer; Jan Sardi - writer on Shine and The Notebook; Andrew Knight - After the Deluge creator/writer and writer on Sea Change; Underbelly's writer/producer Greg Haddrick and writer Felicity Packard; comedian and Whatever Happened To That Guy? creator/writer Peter Moon, along with many more.

I had a mentoring session with experienced writer, John Reeves.  One of the above read my script (I've created a drama series and taken it to the point of writing the pilot) and very generously gave me constructive feedback.  Also, my script is presently being read by an executive of one of the major TV stations.  Who knows what will come of it but it wouldn't have happened if I'd not attended.  This is a must for any budding writers!

For more information contact AWG.

gio 2 success

GIO Car Close Up

I'm getting recognised in the street for... wait for it... my role in the GIO TV Commercials.  I've been approached in the street with "Are you the guy in the GIO ads"?  I say yes, and they ALL tell me how great they think the ads are: "You see most ads and don't pay attention, but yours, I watch it every time I see it!" "I look at you in the ad and I can tell you're a great actor.  You are so real."  "You two are sooo married, I can't believe it."  "Mate, you nailed it.  I put the car one, up there with 'Not happy, Jan'."  One woman was so happy to have me shopping in her store that she hugged me.

I like the attention - it means I used my talents and did something well.  This is a hard industry to work in - income is sporadic, satisfaction is irregular and we're constantly criticised about our work.  I found working with the Orange Whip team a real pleasure and I'm proud of the results.

See for yourself.  I've done two ads for GIO and you will find them both here - Flood and Can't Argue (car).

gio 2

Yesterday I spent the day with actor Helen O'Connor shooting a second GIO TV Commercial.  The first GIO ad filmed in February was successful enough for client GIO, director Simon MacRae and producer Alex Mooney to cast Helen and I in a follow-up advertisement.  Once again I play the husband with a wife just too smart for me to argue with (art imitating life?).  This time we tackle car insurance as my wife drives off in my newly purchased sports car.  Again, a great day spent with group of talented people who obviously love the work they do.

Image by Orange Whip Films.

flood cover

 GIO

GIO

In February I shot a television commercial for GIO with directors Kenn & Simon MacRae, brothers from Orange Whip Films (previous article).  It appears continuously on television and still shots appear in magazines and newspapers.  It seems strange that after all these years in the industry, I am getting recognised more now than ever as "the GIO man".  NIDA staff have commented, my students have all seen it and family and friends keep talking about it.  The response is always that the ad's a good one and often that it makes people laugh - nice to hear.

Image by GIO.

the macrae brothers

Last year I witnessed the amazing creative relationship of two brothers, Joel & Nash Edgerton when I worked on their first feature film, The Square (previous articles 1, 2 & 3).  Today I got to witness a similar relationship in Kenn & Simon MacRae as we worked together inside an enormous Fox Studios sound stage on a TVC for a large insurance company.  The MacRaes uniquely write and direct their projects together and they are indeed 'A Winning Combination' as they say on their website.

macraesTeaming with producer Alex Mooney, they have a list of successful works including winning Project Greenlight which earned them $1 Million to make their first feature film, The View from Greenhaven, due for release this year.

I also got to work with actor Helen O'Connor who I've seen many times at castings and on screen but never actually met.  It was great spending the day with her and we were both quite chuffed when in the lunch queue producer Alex Mooney said "You guys are awesome.  It looks great."  You'll all see for yourself on television soon, no doubt.

To find out more about the team we are going to hear a lot more about, go to their website Orange Whip Films and be sure to look at some of their clips: fantastic.

Links by Orange Whip Films & IMDB.  Image by Orange Whip Films

all saints on air

allsaintsonairI aired this week on Channel 7's All Saints.  Again it was very hard to watch myself but after a second viewing I'm comfortable with my work.  The fact that those who have seen it hate my character says I pulled it off believably.  I'm not quite as lean as I was two weeks ago on the screen at Crosslife's premiere, but that was filmed 2 years ago, at the same time as my last appearance on All Saints.  Both of my appearances on All Saints were a pleasure to do and I'm very happy with the results.

all saints

allsaintsI recently had the great pleasure of playing Joe Summers, a guest role on 7's popular hospital drama All Saints.  This is my second appearance on the show (my first as Michael Carmody in 2005 pictured) and again it was a great experience.  I can't give anything away but hope you get to tune in on Channel 7, Tuesday 10th July at 9.30pm(Check actual time on the day)

The episode was directed by Lynn Maree Danzey.