Directorial Debut: Kiwi Filmmaker Makes Waves with ‘Anno 2020’ in Australian Cinema

As the countdown continues for the world premiere of the Australian-produced mystery-drama Anno 2020 – at a red-carpet event in Sydney on April 7 – attention turns to the film’s New Zealand-born director James Morcan.

James Morcan (right) with Anno 2020 producer Gil Ben-Moshe in Downtown Sydney.

The Sydney-based 45-year-old made his directorial debut helming this movie and has the distinction of not only writing the Anno 2020 script but adapting it from his published novel of the same name.

Morcan is also a screen actor, and he goes against type to play the part of an anti-Semite in an unforgettable scene opposite Jewish actor Gil Ben-Moshe, who is also the film’s lead producer.

Morcan describes Anno 2020 as a mammoth, all-consuming, creative book-to-film project he has been working on around the clock since the Covid-19 lockdowns began in early 2020. He was set to direct another feature film in Sydney when he was pulled from it when the pandemic intervened, resulting in the cancellation of the production. Undeterred, he turned his attention to Anno 2020.

“The storyline (of Anno 2020) is my attempt to make sense of, or mentally process, our strangely altered reality and everything humanity collectively endured in 2020. For the last three years I’ve devoted my life to it, from writing the novel and then the screenplay adaptation to directing the filming and finally guiding it thru post-production.”

Morcan says it’s no exaggeration to say, for him, the film was an absolute beast to direct, but he insists it was always rewarding as the quality was evident throughout the production.  

“I lived every scene in my mind over the duration, visualizing how to bring to life this epic, heartfelt story in the most dramatic yet believable way. The result is a film best described as a global kaleidoscope of interconnected characters seeking redemption, forgiveness, and answers amidst the chaos of 2020.

“If I could summarize Anno 2020 in one word, I would say: substance. It has substance in spades and that’s what I always aim for as a storyteller. Early viewer feedback we are receiving confirms that this story makes people laugh, cry, think on a philosophical level and reflect on their own lives in new ways.”

Morcan believes it will feel extremely genuine to cinemagoers, and he primarily attributes that to some of the filmmaking techniques he and his colleagues pioneered during the film’s making.

“Keeping in mind the movie was shot during the strict lockdowns in 17 cities on four continents, we faced unique challenges. Our actors, in the main, were isolated and separated from each other as opposed to being together on set.

“Besides directing all the many Australian scenes on location, remote filming tech allowed me to direct cast members and crews in the various global locations that I couldn’t travel to due to Covid restrictions. This allowed my crew and I to film live all over the world without travelling to every single location.”

Anno 2020 boasts an award-winning ensemble of international actors. They include leading Australians Greg Poppleton (Backtrack, The Chronicles of Narnia) and Erin Connor (Occupation: Rainfall, Dino King 3D), as well as US veterans Kevin Scott Allen (Star Trek, Alias, Prison Break) and Chinese American Crystal J. Huang (Dark Feathers).

“The actors were pushed to their limits as the rare performance style we employed is emotionally raw, semi-improvisational and mostly shot via close-ups courtesy of Zoom technology.

“This was not only reflective of the way many people were forced to communicate during the pandemic, but also it created a never-before-seen way to view characters interacting in movies – showing two close-ups at once. That’s something that’s never seen in regular movies apart from brief split-screen footage.

“Our video-linked conversations provide a real intimacy and dramatically contrast with the panoramic shots in the rest of the film.”

Morcan says those panoramic shots he refers to were all filmed using high-quality cinema cameras.

“Strategically recreating Zoom-style chats proved to be an asset. Our actors infused their own real-life experiences, be they traumatic or joyful, in cinema vérité fashion. That ‘real life’ injection helped evolve their characters into something even more truthful, giving this overall piece of entertainment shades of docu-drama or at least ultra-realism.

“Audiences will definitely feel these honest truths, proving the old adage what comes from the heart, goes to the heart.”

Morcan says one of the groundbreaking methods employed while shooting was to encourage ad-libbed interactions where the actors improvised much of the dialogue around preconceived situations.

“These improvised sequences facilitated a sense of immense spontaneity and realism similar to what auteur directors Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorcese did in the likes of those 1970’s classics Apocalypse Now and Taxi Driver, and more recently in Scorcese’s The Wolf of Wall Street. That approach led to very genuine interactions between actors in character.”

Anno 2020’s lead producer Gil Ben-Moshe, of MoneyShot Productions, says he believes the movie will launch Morcan’s career as a director.

“James proved to every actor involved that he understands story and what it takes to direct an ensemble that boasts Hollywood credits. I’m truly excited for him and look forward to working with him on many future projects.”

Ben-Moshe says collaborating with Morcan on Anno 2020 was confirmation for him that he has directing chops, an admirable work ethic, and the ability to get a performance out of any actor regardless of age, experience, or attitude.

“Directing is a real artform which requires an enormous amount of work, planning and having a clear vision for every scene. James worked around the clock ensuring he was prepared for every possible scenario that could arise during pre-production and primary photography.”

From Morcan’s perspective, Anno 2020 is the culmination of a two decade-long career telling stories in the creative mediums of cinema, television, and theatre – around the world and spanning various genres and historical periods. One notable acting performance was a lead role alongside Berynn Schwerdt (Wyrmwood) in the post-Apocalyptic feature film After Armageddon, which he also wrote.

Other leading roles include the OZ-Bollywood feature films My Cornerstone and Love You Krishna for which he also wrote the screenplays for. Both productions were filmed in Sydney and Mumbai, and incorporated English and Hindi languages. My Cornerstone screened in cinemas Australia-wide and in selected Indian cinemas.

Morcan also performed in Ben Hur: The Stadium Spectacular, starring Russell Crowe, before an audience of 130,000 people over two nights at Sydney’s ANZ Olympic Stadium. Other acting credits include the British TV series Dark Knight, the BBC feature Wild About Harry, and TV commercials for multinational companies like Samsung and Dunkin’ Donuts.

Another acting highlight was playing a vigilante in The Pawn, a gritty feature film set in Melbourne, Victoria, which Morcan’s production company Morcan Motion Pictures produced. The noir-style thriller premiered at the Melbourne Underground Film Festival and screened at the Imperia Film Festival in Italy.

He was also Executive producer on Desired, a New Zealand thriller directed by Amanda Phillips and starring Dwayne Cameron (#211). It was shot in Auckland and premiered at Cannes Marche du Film in France.

Morcan has also made his mark as an author. Writing in collaboration with his father Lance Morcan, he has co-authored some 35 published fiction and non-fiction books in addition to his solo-authored novel Anno 2020. Many of these have been regular visitors to Amazon’s bestseller lists.

The father-and-son writing team’s novels include the bestselling historical adventures Fiji, White Spirit and Into the Americas, and their acclaimed thrillers Silent Fear and The Orphan Trilogy. The pair are progressively adapting their novels to feature film screenplays, and several of these are in early development.

Among their most popular non-fiction titles is Debunking Holocaust Denial Theories, a book that was written in collaboration with Holocaust survivors to document the historicity of the WW2 genocide.

Across film, television, theatre, and literature, Morcan says he has often covered similar themes to those of Anno 2020.

“My stories usually involve twist endings as this film has, as well as powerful, realistic characters that audiences and readers can relate to.”

Looking ahead, Morcan says his goal for the movie Anno 2020, besides commercial success, is to achieve a sense of unity.

“In an increasingly complex modern world that seems to be more and more about divisions in society, where people are all being lumped into political sides or categories and are pitted against each other, a diverse, all-inclusive film with family and community values will prove to be very timely in my opinion.

“And I am confident audiences will be surprised to see all the similarities in the different characters we follow across the many countries, cultures, religions and ethnicities we explore throughout the story.”

Anno 2020 will celebrate its world premiere at a red-carpet event at Randwick’s The Ritz Cinema, in Sydney, on April 7. Beyond that, a Melbourne screening will take place at the Lido Cinema on May 6, and a Brisbane screening at the New Farm Cinema on June 4. The longer-term target includes online distribution on major streaming platforms.

The Anno 2020 trailer can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/@ANNO2020TheMovie

Amy Winehouse’s Legacy Continues: Pre-Order ‘Back to Black: Songs from the Original Motion Picture’ Album Now

UMR/Island Records is unveiling ‘Back to Black: Songs from the Original Motion Picture,’ a compilation album inspired by Sam Taylor-Johnson’s highly anticipated film BACK TO BLACK, depicting the life of the iconic Amy Winehouse. Set to launch on May 17, 2024, this compilation features a twelve-song set showcasing Amy’s original recordings from her debut album “Frank” and the critically acclaimed “Back To Black,” including a poignant new track, ‘Song for Amy,’ performed by Nick Cave. The film’s soulful score, composed by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, seamlessly complements Amy’s narrative.

Featuring additional tracks from artists who inspired Amy, such as The Shangri-Las, Billie Holiday, Minnie Riperton, Dinah Washington, and Sarah Vaughan, this compilation celebrates Amy Winehouse’s enduring influence on music. With over 30 million records sold worldwide and 80 million monthly streams, Amy’s legacy continues to resonate with audiences globally.

Directed by acclaimed filmmaker Sam Taylor-Johnson, BACK TO BLACK captures Amy’s unparalleled genius and authenticity, with breakout star Marisa Abela portraying the music icon alongside a stellar cast. Charting Amy’s meteoric rise to fame and her personal struggles, the film offers an intimate glimpse into her extraordinary life.

Available in various formats including 140g black vinyl, limited edition peach-colored vinyl (D2C exclusive), double vinyl, single CD, and double CD, each physical copy of the album includes a personal note from director Sam Taylor-Johnson and stunning behind-the-scenes photographs from the film set. Digital versions of the album, both standard and deluxe, will coincide with the Australian cinema release of BACK TO BLACK on April 11, 2024.

Amy Winehouse’s legacy as a once-in-a-generation talent is immortalized in “Back to Black: Songs from the Original Motion Picture,” inviting audiences to rediscover her timeless music and unparalleled artistry.

Link: Pre-Order ‘Back to Black: Songs from the Original Motion Picture’

Summary:

  • Includes new track ‘Song For Amy’ sung by Nick Cave
  • BACK TO BLACK film to debut in Australian cinemas on April 11, 2024
  • Digital versions of the album to coincide with the film’s release date

Unveiling “Suka”: A Gripping Tale of Love, Loyalty, and Legacy in Western Sydney’s Underworld

In the heart of Western Sydney, where crime syndicates hold sway and power is the ultimate currency, the movie “Suka” promises to captivate audiences with its intense narrative and compelling characters. Directed by Heidi Lee Douglas and Co-written and Produced by Tsu Shan Chambers, this film was recently nominated for an AACTA Award for Best Film Score and Best Online Series at the SPA Awards. It delves deep into the tumultuous world of the Yang and Dawood clans, exploring themes of family, honor, and forbidden love.

Synopsis:

“Suka” unfolds against the backdrop of a turf war between the Yang clan, led by the ruthless patriarch Jun, and the Dawood family, the last bastion of resistance against their tyranny. At the helm of the Dawood clan is Wasiya, a formidable matriarch who maneuvers behind the scenes to dismantle the Yang empire that cost her husband’s life.

Central to the story is Hui, Wasiya’s daughter, who returns to Australia unaware of her family’s dark history. Sheltered by her best friend Jay, Hui finds herself entangled in a web of intrigue when she crosses paths with Bo, the heir to the Yang dynasty. Despite their opposing allegiances, Hui and Bo are drawn to each other, igniting a forbidden romance that threatens to shatter the fragile peace between their families.

As Bo grapples with his loyalty to his father and his growing feelings for Hui, he is faced with an impossible choice when he is tasked with eliminating a traitor to the Yang clan. When Hui witnesses the assassination and falls into the clutches of Bo’s sister Fandi, the stage is set for a showdown that will determine the fate of Western Sydney.

Cast:

  • Ethan Browne as Jay
  • Grace Huang as Fandi Yang
  • Jenny Wu as Hui Dawood
  • Paul He as Bo Yang
  • Tsu Shan Chambers as Wasiya Dawood

Director: Heidi Lee Douglas

Producer: Tsu Shan Chambers

“Suka” promises to be a cinematic tour de force, blending elements of action, romance, and intrigue to deliver a riveting viewing experience. With its stellar cast, talented crew, and gripping storyline, this film is poised to leave an indelible mark on the landscape of Australian cinema. Get ready to immerse yourself in the world of “Suka,” where love and loyalty collide in a battle for supremacy.

What inspired the story? How did it come about?

The idea of SUKA came from Actor/Writer/Producer Tsu Shan Chambers and her experiences being on student exchange in China, stuck between two feuding host families. One of them owned half of what they called “Women’s Street.” Combined with Tsu Shan’s public health background and social impact aspirations, when she saw the gang wars occurring in Western Sydney, Tsu Shan wanted to convey a message to young people about the consequences of actions and inactions through an entertaining medium. Everything you do or don’t do matters.

What makes this story unique, and why should people watch it?

SUKA comes in two formats—a feature-length and a 6 x 12-minute interactive series as an additional offering. The interactive nature stems from the messaging about actions and consequences.

SUKA is also female and Asian-led in front of and behind the camera. Because it’s an action drama, such a story is rarely shot in Australia.

What was the production process like?

It was very challenging as we shot an action drama in three weeks, completely night shoots. We also had budget restrictions and had many first-time feature filmmakers, so it was a steep learning curve for some. However, we are incredibly proud of this team, who pulled together and created a magnificent visual and unique story on screen.

What was the most challenging part of bringing the project to light?

First-time feature filmmakers and obtaining the distribution required to trigger off the financing.

Did anything funny or exceptional happen on set?

Something that was exceptional was the actors learning the fight choreography in two weeks. Then, because of the locations, needing to learn new choreography within a couple of hours quickly. Our stunt coordinator, Jackie Murray, was amazing and incredibly supportive in making the action look great on screen.

What is the next step for the project?

We have Australian/New Zealand distribution with Umbrella Entertainment, and it will be released in North America by Synergetic Distribution on platforms such as Vudu/Fandango, Amazon, and Hoopla. Our rest of the world Sales Agent, Multivisionnaire, will also exploit Suka in other territories. We hope that SUKA 2 will get commissioned!

Has it won any awards or had any big achievements yet?

We just had its in-person premiere in Sydney, with over 300 fully packed cinemas. The interactive series format has also been accepted into the Sydney Web Fest. We look forward to more!

If you could redo anything in the process or the film itself, what would it be.

Follow your gut and make sure that your team’s experience matches the level of the budget of the film.

You can catch Suka via DVD, iTunes, NORTH AMERICA Vudu/Fandango, Amazon and Hoopla.

 

Disneynature’s “Tiger” Set to Roar onto Disney+ With Priyanka Chopra Jonas As Narrator

Photo Supplied by Brooke Birch of DIsney+

Marking exactly 15 years since the label’s inaugural release, “Earth,” Disneynature’s latest offering, “Tiger,” promises a captivating exploration into the world of one of Earth’s most revered creatures. Narrated by Priyanka Chopra Jonas, the documentary invites viewers to accompany Ambar, a young tigress navigating the enchanting forests of India while raising her cubs.

Chopra Jonas expressed her enthusiasm, stating, “It’s just wonderful to be able to be a part of something so special and to tell the story of this magnificent animal that comes from my country—I was very honored.” She emphasized her personal connection with tigers, particularly the maternal instinct mirrored in Ambar’s journey, resonating with mothers everywhere.

Directed by Mark Linfield, co-directed by Vanessa Berlowitz and Rob Sullivan, and produced by Linfield, Berlowitz, and Roy Conli, “Tiger” is the culmination of 1,500 days of filming. Blending thrilling action with intimate moments, the film promises an immersive experience for audiences when it streams on Disney+ starting on Earth Day, April 22, 2024.

Complementing “Tiger” is another Earth Day release on Disney+, the companion film “Tigers on the Rise,” narrated by Blair Underwood. This documentary celebrates the resurgence of tiger populations, showcasing the challenges faced by both humans and animals as these majestic creatures venture beyond their traditional habitats. Directed by Rob Sullivan, co-directed by Alistair Tones, and produced by Sullivan, Vanessa Berlowitz, Mark Linfield, and Roy Conli, “Tigers on the Rise” sheds light on the efforts of veterinarians, scientists, and community patrols dedicated to fostering coexistence between tigers and people.

“Richard Roxburgh Leads Stellar Cast in ‘The Correspondent’ – A Riveting Tale of Courage and Survival

Mohamed Fahmy (Julian Maroun), Baher Mohamed (Rahel Romahn) and Peter Greste (Richard Roxburgh) in

The Correspondent. Photo by John Platt.

Today marks the conclusion of filming in Sydney, Australia, for “The Correspondent,” a compelling feature film centered around the experiences of Peter Greste, an acclaimed foreign correspondent. Greste, alongside two colleagues, faced arrest in Cairo in 2013 while working for Al Jazeera, charged with terrorism offenses.

Directed by Kriv Stenders (“Danger Close: The Battle of Long Tan,” “Red Dog”) and penned by Peter Duncan (“Rake,” “Operation Buffalo”), the screenplay draws from Greste’s memoir, ‘The First Casualty.’

Leading the cast is Richard Roxburgh (“Rake,” “Elvis”) as Peter Greste, with Julian Maroun (“Fighting Season”) and Rahel Romahn (“Shantaram”) portraying his arrested colleagues, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, respectively. The ensemble also includes Yael Stone (“Orange is the New Black”), Nic Cassim (“Mr Inbetween”), Mojean Aria (“Shayda”), Fayssal Bazzi (“Stateless”), Majid Shokor (“House of Gods”), Josh McConville (“Elvis”), and Hazem Shammas (“The Clearing”).

Set against the backdrop of the Arab Spring in Christmas 2013, the film delves into Greste’s abrupt detention and subsequent accusations of terrorism, thrusting him into a harrowing ordeal where survival hinges on challenging a formidable regime for his freedom.

Carmel Travers, a former foreign correspondent and the first female Head of News and Current Affairs for an Australian television network, produces the film through Pop Family Entertainment. Travers expresses excitement about the stellar performances and the powerful narrative brought to life by the talented cast and director Kriv Stenders.

“The Correspondent” receives production funding from Screen Australia, in association with Screen NSW, with additional support from Jovial Planet Productions, Spectrum Films, Dreamlight Studio, and the Adelaide Film Festival Investment Fund.

Grainne Brunsdon, Director of Content at Screen Australia, underscores the importance of sharing such a vital story with global audiences, praising the project for its enlightenment, passion, and courage.

Kyas Hepworth, Head of Screen NSW, lauds the collaborative efforts of the film’s creative team, highlighting the contribution of the NSW film industry and its diverse talents.

Maslow Entertainment handles distribution in Australia and New Zealand, while Moviehouse Entertainment oversees international sales. Marc Wooldridge, founder and managing director of Maslow Entertainment, expresses pride in being part of a project that promises to captivate audiences with its enduring themes of resilience, loyalty, and bravery.

Marc Wooldridge, founder and managing director of Maslow Entertainment, said: “The Correspondent promises to be an engrossing, tense, and thought-provoking film based on a true story of timeless relevance and grounded in the compelling themes of resilience, loyalty, and courage under fire. It’s the sort of interesting and ambitious project that we believe cinema audiences want to see more of, and so we are very proud to be part of this one.”

This article was sourced from a press release sent by Harriet of Nixco

Unveiling ‘Wicked Little Letters’: A Delightful Dive into British Mystery Comedy

In an exciting announcement for film enthusiasts across Australia, Academy Award® and BAFTA winner Olivia Colman, alongside Director Thea Sharrock, are set to grace the shores of Australia this March for the release of the eagerly anticipated British mystery comedy – ‘Wicked Little Letters’.

Scheduled to hit Australian cinemas on March 21st, ‘Wicked Little Letters’ boasts a stellar cast, including renowned talents such as Olivia Colman, Jessie Buckley, Anjana Vasan, Timothy Spall, Joanna Scanlan, and many more. Directed by the accomplished Thea Sharrock and with a script penned by British actor and writer Jonny Sweet, the film promises an intriguing blend of wit, charm, and suspense, all based on a remarkable true story.

Synopsis: Set against the backdrop of a quaint 1920s English seaside town, ‘Wicked Little Letters’ unfolds as a darkly humorous tale of scandal and intrigue. The narrative revolves around two contrasting neighbors: the prim and proper Edith Swan (played by Olivia Colman) and the vivacious Irish migrant Rose Gooding (portrayed by Jessie Buckley).

The story takes a whimsical turn when the residents of the town start receiving peculiar letters filled with unintentionally hilarious profanities. Amidst the chaos, Rose finds herself wrongly accused of the misdeed. As the scandal gains national attention and a trial ensues, the town’s women, led by the determined Police Officer Gladys Moss (played by Anjana Vasan), take matters into their own hands. With their investigation uncovering surprising truths, it becomes evident that there is more to the case than meets the eye.

Celebrity Spotlight: Olivia Colman’s portrayal of the conservative yet enigmatic Edith Swan promises to captivate audiences with her signature blend of nuance and charisma. Alongside her, Jessie Buckley’s portrayal of the spirited Rose Gooding adds a dynamic layer of energy and intrigue to the narrative.

Director Thea Sharrock’s adept direction brings the whimsical world of ‘Wicked Little Letters’ to life, blending humor and mystery seamlessly to create an immersive cinematic experience.

Final Thoughts: With its stellar cast, captivating storyline, and impeccable direction, ‘Wicked Little Letters’ is poised to delight audiences with its blend of comedy, mystery, and charm. As Olivia Colman and Director Thea Sharrock embark on their journey to Australia, anticipation for the film’s release reaches fever pitch. Prepare to be swept away by the whimsical world of ‘Wicked Little Letters’ as it unravels its delightful tale on the silver screen this March.

The media release was sourced from an article provided by Studio Canal

Get Ready for the Digital Adventure! Disney Just Dropped the First Glimpse of “TRON: Ares” Coming in 2025!

Hold onto your identity discs, Disney fans! The much-anticipated “TRON: Ares” is officially in the works, bringing the iconic TRON universe back to life. This latest installment, directed by Joachim Rønning, promises to blend cutting-edge design, technology, and storytelling to deliver an electrifying experience.

A Journey Beyond the Grid: “TRON: Ares” takes us beyond the digital frontier, introducing Ares, a sophisticated Program with a mission that transcends the boundaries of the virtual realm. Ares ventures into the real world on a thrilling and perilous quest, marking a groundbreaking encounter between humankind and A.I. beings. The Grid is evolving, and so is the adventure!

All-Star Cast Lights Up the Screen: The film boasts an ensemble cast featuring Hollywood heavyweights such as Jared Leto, Greta Lee, Evan Peters, Hasan Minhaj, Jodie Turner-Smith, Arturo Castro, Cameron Monaghan, and the legendary Gillian Anderson. With such a stellar lineup, “TRON: Ares” is set to dazzle audiences with both talent and visual spectacle.

Save the Date: 2025 Arrival! Production kicked off in January in the vibrant city of Vancouver, and the movie is scheduled to hit theaters in 2025. The wait is on, but if the first look is any indication, “TRON: Ares” is gearing up to be an immersive experience that will transport fans back into the heart of the digital grid.

Director’s Excitement: Director Joachim Rønning is thrilled to be at the helm of “TRON: Ares,” expressing his excitement about building upon the legacy of the TRON franchise. He states, “Now more than ever, it feels like the right time to return to the Grid.” Fans can expect a fusion of nostalgia and innovation in this cinematic journey.

A Legacy Continues: “TRON: Ares” follows in the groundbreaking footsteps of Disney’s 1982 classic “TRON” and its 2010 sequel “TRON: Legacy.” With a fresh narrative, state-of-the-art visuals, and an all-star cast, this new chapter is poised to capture the imaginations of both longtime TRON enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

Prepare for an Adventure Like Never Before – “TRON: Ares” is Set to Illuminate Screens in 2025!

From Gold Coast to Tinseltown: Marissa Kaye’s Journey as an Aussie Producer Takes a Quantum Leap with Upcoming Hollywood Blockbuster

Australian actor and film producer Marissa Kaye is poised to make a groundbreaking entry into the U.S. film industry with her latest venture, spearheading the creation of the next big Hollywood Franchise, “Anti-Social.” Collaborating once again with award-winning writer Brendan Byrne, the duo aims to captivate global audiences with their creative prowess.

Having accumulated a series of accolades throughout her career, Marissa Kaye expresses her excitement about the project, stating, “I’ve always been inspired by the history of stories that Hollywood has produced over the years. It’s a dream come true to be part of the industry and contribute my perspective to the global tapestry of cinema. I believe that by immersing myself, I can push my creative boundaries and create something truly extraordinary.”

Brendan Byrne, known for his award-winning work, joins forces with Marissa once again after their successful collaboration on multiple projects under Shadow Wolves Productions, spanning Sydney, Gold Coast, and now the United States. Their shared commitment to storytelling is further emphasized by the success of their previous film, “I’m Here Too,” which became a viral sensation, raising awareness for teen suicide.

With over 13 million views on YouTube and significant success on Tubi, the duo’s impactful film sparked widespread conversation with over 100,000 comments, paving the way for their upcoming Hollywood project. Currently shrouded in secrecy, the project is already generating buzz among industry insiders, who eagerly speculate on the genre and potential star-studded cast.

Marissa and Brendan, who have two more productions lined up to shoot on the Gold Coast, continue to push boundaries with their unique storytelling approach. Their dedication to creating meaningful content that resonates with audiences reflects in the success of their previous works and sets the stage for another remarkable Hollywood venture.

As the industry anticipates the unveiling of their latest project, Hollywood is on notice – Marissa Kaye is bringing her creative vision and Australian charm to the forefront. Get ready for the next big Hollywood franchise as another Aussie powerhouse takes center stage.

Beyond Imagination: Blumhouse’s IMAGINARY Promises a Hair-Raising Journey into the Dark Unknown

Prepare to dive into the sinister depths of childhood imagination as Blumhouse, the acclaimed creators of FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S and M3GAN, presents a spine-chilling original horror experience – IMAGINARY. This haunting tale questions the innocence of imaginary friends, leaving audiences to wonder if these companions are merely products of youthful creativity or something far more sinister lurking beneath the surface.

When Jessica (DeWanda Wise) relocates with her family back to her childhood home, an unsettling turn of events unfolds as her youngest stepdaughter, Alice (Pyper Braun), develops an eerie attachment to a seemingly harmless stuffed bear named Chauncey, discovered in the basement. Innocent playtime takes a dark turn as Alice’s games with Chauncey evolve from playful to disturbing.

As Jessica attempts to intervene and understand the mysterious bond between Alice and Chauncey, she discovers that the cuddly bear is far from an ordinary toy – unveiling a nightmarish truth that challenges the very fabric of reality.

Lionsgate and Blumhouse present, a Tower of Babble production

Release Date: In Cinemas March 7

Cast:

  • DeWanda Wise
  • Tom Payne
  • Taegan Burns
  • Pyper Braun
  • Veronica Falcon
  • Betty Buckley

Directed By: Jeff Wadlow

Written By: Jeff Wadlow & Greg Erb & Jason Oremland

Produced By: Jason Blum, Jeff Wadlow, p.g.a.

Prepare for a cinematic journey that will unravel the darkest corners of imagination. IMAGINARY, a Blumhouse horror masterpiece, hits theaters on March 7. Brace yourself for a rollercoaster of suspense, fear, and the unsettling question – what if your imaginary friend is not a product of your imagination, but something far more sinister?

FilmCentral Magazine Spotlights AACTA Awards 2024: A Night of Celebration, Diversity, and Unforgettable Moments

Photo Credit: Matt Bonnici

The glamour of the 2024 AACTA Awards illuminated HOTA, Home of the Arts on Queensland’s breathtaking Gold Coast, on Saturday, February 10. The preceding AACTA Industry Awards took place on Thursday, February 8, marking an extraordinary celebration of the Australian film industry. Among the attendees was FilmCentral Magazine’s editor-in-chief, who, along with the Streets of Colour team, captured the essence of this prestigious event.

FilmCentral Magazine proudly reports that several members of their Streets of Colour team graced the AACTA Awards ceremony, commemorating the collective effort that earned them a nomination for Best Film – Independent. The editor-in-chief expressed immense pride for the cast, crew, and supporters, acknowledging the dedication and hard work that led to this significant recognition.

“While we didn’t secure the win in our category, being nominated was a monumental achievement in itself. Our Streets of Colour team had a one in six chance, and the acknowledgment of their work on such a platform is a testament to their talent and dedication,” said Yolandi Franken, Editor-in-Chief of FilmCentral Magazine.

The Streets of Colour team’s nomination for Best Film – Independent was a remarkable acknowledgment of their commitment to storytelling that pushes boundaries. The editor-in-chief emphasized the importance of overcoming systemic challenges and addressing the fear associated with telling stories that resonate with marginalized communities.

“In their pursuit of creative excellence, the Streets of Colour team faced systemic mountains and navigated the fear entrenched in those hesitant to share narratives like theirs. Their journey symbolizes a commitment to breaking barriers, taking risks, and amplifying voices that often go unheard,” added Franken.

While the win eluded them, the Streets of Colour team’s presence at the AACTA Awards was a triumph in itself, shining a spotlight on their resilience and dedication to bringing meaningful stories to the forefront of the Australian film landscape.