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Media Centre

17 12 2008 - Media release

Ray Lawrence returns to the screen

Internationally acclaimed Australian director Ray Lawrence (Jindabyne, Lantana, Bliss) was yesterday backed by Screen Australia to direct Being Dead, a poetic thriller about a married couple who are savagely murdered.

Being Dead is an adaptation of Jim Crace’s haunting novel about the dark secret history that the murdered couple’s estranged daughter discovers when she returns home. 

Being Dead is classic Ray Lawrence relationship territory – an intelligent and deeply satisfying murder mystery in the same vein as Lantana.  Screen Australia is delighted to be supporting Ray’s next film,” said Ruth Harley, Screen Australia Chief Executive Officer.

Lawrence has been a successful and award-winning commercials director for more than 30 years. In this time he has directed three features: Bliss which screened in competition at Cannes Film Festival; Lantana which played to large audiences at the Australian box office and won seven Australian Film Institute awards; and Jindabyne which had its world premiere at Cannes and was nominated for numerous awards.

Emile Sherman (Candy, $9.99, Disgrace) and Patrick Cassavetti (Intimacy, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas) will produce the film with Iain Canning (Control, Hunger) as Executive Producer.  Writer Beatrix Christian (Jindabyne) has adapted the novel and at Lawrence’s request transplanted the story from the United Kingdom to Newcastle, New South Wales. 

Finance for an additional four feature films was also approved at Screen Australia’s December Board meeting.

Yael Bergman and Laura Waters, the producing team behind the hit television series Summer Heights High, received backing for I Love You Too – a romantic comedy about a commitment-phobic man-about-town and a gifted new age dwarf who go on a quest to win back the women they love. The film is written by comedian Peter Hellier and will be directed by Daina Reid.

Three documentary series secured funding approval including Addicted to Money, a three-part series that explores everything you need to know about the causes of the financial meltdown and what you need to survive in the New Economy.

Feature films, The Place Between and Griff the Invisible received Letters of Offer through the IndiVision Production Fund. The Place Between is the first feature by acclaimed Indigenous director Beck Cole (Plains Empty).

Screen Australia also backed 17 one-off documentaries, one television drama series and two children’s television series.

Producer Offset
Since the Producer Offset's inception, 190 projects have been issued with provisional certificates: 75 features, 79 non-feature documentaries and 36 other projects (e.g. TV series, telemovies, direct-DVD/online, short-form animation). Fourteen final certificates have been issued (two features, eight non-feature documentaries and four other projects) with a total determined QAPE of A$27,711,279m. Five further applications for final certificates are under consideration.

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