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03 11 2021 - Media release

Ambitious horror comedy Crazy Fun Park starts production

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Writer/director Nicholas Verso and producer Joanna Werner

ABC, Screen Australia and The Australian Children’s Television Foundation are thrilled to announce ambitious new ABC ME horror comedy series Crazy Fun Park. Produced by Werner Film Productions this 10 episode x 30 minute series is also funded by Film Victoria.

Crazy Fun Park is a hair-raising coming of age tale following best friends Chester and Mapplethorpe, a duo so inseparable, not even death can pull them apart. After Mapplethorpe tragically dies in the town’s abandoned Crazy Fun Park, Chester discovers that his friend is now “living” with the other undead Fun Kids who also met their end at the park. With no adults, free rides and all the junk food you can eat, it’s every kid’s dream. But this tragic turn of events means the two teens are forced to redefine their friendship, and as they navigate the already complicated teenage years, they fear their friendship may not be as eternal as they originally imagined.

Created by writer/director Nicholas Verso (Boys In The Trees) and produced by Joanna Werner (The Newsreader) the series is a celebration of life that explores the changing nature of adolescent friendships in a social landscape of cliques and high school hierarchies. The story looks to support young people whilst demystifying death and the grieving process with both sensitivity and humour.

Producer Joanna Werner says, “Crazy Fun Park is a funny, scary and enthralling drama that deals with some big important themes, wrapped up in a comedy horror series. Nick has created a fascinating world of compelling, diverse characters, both alive and dead, whose stories are told in the incredible setting of an old abandoned Fun Park that comes alive after the sun sets. This is a big ambitious production which wouldn’t be possible without the amazing support for the ABC, ACTF, Screen Australia and Film Vic, and we can’t wait to bring it to audiences in Australia and around the world.”

Head of ABC Children’s Content, Libbie Doherty says, “Crazy Fun Park is an intoxicating wild ride that pays homage to teenagers, their lived experiences and their remarkable empathy and humanity. This beautiful, irreverent and at times haunting story authored by the multi-talented Nick Verso and his crack writing team – Magda, Craig, Enoch and Fury – delivers 100% into the horror/comedy genre. With Nick directing alongside producing powerhouse Jo Werner we know this series is going to strike a deep chord with Australian tweens.”

Screen Australia’s Head of Content, Sally Caplan says, “Nick Verso has a proven ability to tap into the complex emotional terrain of teenagers and, teaming up with accomplished producer Joanna Werner, Crazy Fun Park is set to be something special – a fun, boisterous adventure that also explores grief in a nuanced way for young viewers. We’re proud to support this highly original series.”

Film Victoria’s CEO, Caroline Pitcher says, “Crazy Fun Park is a bold and ambitious young adult tale that delivers the perfect balance of horror and comedy. We always look to invest in captivating content for our audiences, and we know that story that captures struggles and joy of high school life matched with the setting of a netherworld of fun, will not only resonate with teenagers but keep them thoroughly entertained.”

ACTF CEO, Jenny Buckland says, “We’re incredibly excited to be involved in this brave and unique show, which explores grief and male adolescence in a compassionate, clever and original way. Crazy Fun Park is funny, touching, and wildly entertaining, and we can’t wait to see how teen audiences respond to it.”

Crazy Fun Park will premiere on ABC ME and ABC iview in late 2022.

Production Credit: Crazy Fun Park is a Werner Film production for the ABC. Major production investment from Screen Australia and Film Victoria in association with the ABC. Distribution by Australian Children’s Television Foundation. Created by Nicholas Verso, Directed by Verso and Adrian Russell Wills. Writers: Nicholas Verso, Magda Wozniak, Craig Irvin, Enoch Mailangi and Fury. Produced by Joanna Werner with ABC Executive Producer Libbie Doherty. Executive Producer; Stuart Menzies, Joanna Werner, Bernadette O’Mahony.

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