News 27.08.19



This month Babyteeth will have its world premiere in competition at Venice International Film Festival, quickly followed by Hearts and Bones, Black Bitch and I Am Woman, all of which will be entertaining Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) audiences with cutting-edge Australian drama.

Starring Ben Mendelsohn (Animal Kingdom) and Essie Davis (The Babadook), Babyteeth is a heartbreaking comedy about a family with a seriously ill daughter who falls madly in love with a small time drug dealer.

Actors Ben Mendelsohn, Eliza Scanlen and Toby Wallace will attend the festival, along with Producer Alex White, Executive Producer Jan Chapman, Writer Rita Kalnejais, and Director Shannon Murphy.

Ahead of the film’s world premiere Alex White and Jan Chapman said “To be honoured alongside all the extraordinary films and filmmakers in competition at the Venice Film Festival is an incredible achievement for our team and a joy we share with all those who helped us make the film – both our exceptional writer and director, our wonderful cast lead by the electrifying duo of Essie Davis and Ben Mendelsohn alongside new talent Eliza Scanlen and Toby Wallace, our dedicated crew and invaluable investors.”

Ausfilm members Spectrum Films provided a complete suite of post-production services and Panavision supplied cameras and lenses.

Celluloid Dreams is handling international sales. 

I Am Woman

I Am Woman, the directorial debut of LA-based Australian director Unjoo Moon (The Zen of Bennett) has been selected to open Toronto Film Festival’s prestigious Special Presentation section. Filmed in Sydney and Los Angeles, the film tells the story of Australian singing superstar Helen Reddy.

Stars of the film Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Danielle Macdonald and Evan Peters will attend, as well as Director/Producer Unjoo Moon, Producer Rosemary Blight from Goalpost Pictures, Director of Photography and Academy Award-winner Dion Beebe (Memoirs of A Geisha, Chicago) and Composer Rafael May.

Ahead of the world premiere Rosemary Blight said “We are absolutely delighted to have the World Premiere of I Am Woman as the opening film of the Special Presentations section of TIFF and to be able to celebrate both NSW’s filmmaking talent and Helen Reddy’s incredible achievement on the world stage.”

Ausfilm members Fox Studios Australia hosted production of I Am Woman, providing stages, production offices, art and wardrobe department workshops and storage facilities. Whilst shooting at Fox Studios, Spectrum Films provided offline editorial facilities; Trackdown Studios provided Music Supervision and Score Recording services for the film and Cutting Edge provided VFX, sound and picture post production for the film.

Transmission will distribute the film in Australia and New Zealand. WestEnd Films is handling international sales.

Hearts and Bones

Hearts and Bones, which had its world premiere at the Sydney Film Festival, will screen in the TIFF’s Discovery Programme.

Produced by Matt Reeder and set in Sydney, Hearts and Bones tells the story of Dan, a renowned war photographer struggling with PTSD, who forms an unexpected bond with Sebastian, a Sudanese refugee, until one of his photographs unearths a dark secret from Sebastian’s past.

Attending the Festival will be Director Ben Lawrence, Producer Matt Reeder and actors Hugo Weaving and Andrew Luri. 

On being selected for TIFF Lawrence said “I’m so proud and really excited that Hearts and Bones has been selected to be part of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival. It’s such an audience-focused festival and throughout its history has premiered many films that go on to resonate internationally. To be the only Australian film selected for the Discovery programme is a great endorsement. Full credit to our talented crew.”

Madman will release the film next year in Australia. International Sales are being handled by Visit Films. Ausfilm members Spectrum Films provided a complete suite of post-production services.

Black B*tch

Directed by Rachel Perkins, Black B*tch (working title) is a 6-part series starring Deborah Mailman as Alex Irving and Rachel Griffiths as her rival Rachel Anderson, which will be screening two episodes back-to-back in the TIFF’s Primetime program.

Made by Blackfella Films, Black B*tch is a captivating drama about a charismatic and contradictory Indigenous woman who is thrust into the national limelight. The series plays out a story of high-stakes ambition, betrayal and treachery that unfolds in Australia’s political arena.

Attending the festival will be actors Deborah Mailman and Rachel Griffiths, Director Rachel Perkins, Producer Darren Dale and Editor Deb Peart.

Deborah Mailman in Black B*tch © Blackfella Films

Ahead of the screening at TIFF Darren Dale said “It was an honour to work with the extraordinary talents of Deborah Mailman and Rachel Griffiths on this story of women, race, power and the lengths people will go to in order to get what they want. For it now to be selected by TIFF is a thrilling endorsement that this is a compelling, relevant and provocative series that pierces the heart of the times we live in.”

Ausfilm members Fox Studios Australia provided production offices along with art and wardrobe department workshops; Cutting Edge provided VFX, sound and picture post production for the film and Panavision supplied cameras and lenses.

Black B*tch (NB titled Black Bitch at TIFF) will be screening on the ABC, Australia’s National Broadcaster, later this year. Keshet International is handling international sales while Endeavor Content reps US rights.