Action film 9 Hours To Dawn has returned to Sydney.

Director and co-star Johan Earl, owner of Rebellion Pictures and special effects company Armzfx, was originally going to shoot the film in Detroit, USA – along with two others – however, due to Michigan state financing changes it has been brought back to Sydney.

The film is currently in pre-production and the Sydney filmmaker is looking at completing the film on a budget of about $2.5 million. This will be privately invested.

“It’s a mammoth task and we'll be transforming Sydney into a giant urban decaying city, similar to Detroit, during the post-production process,” Earl said.

Preliminary casting has already started, being undertaken by Christine King Casting's Dave Newman, who casted The Pacific.

The film – which Earl describes as “Collateral on steroids” – tells the story of a rogue cop who has till dawn to kill several witnesses in a major criminal trial the next morning. If he fails, there are dire consequences.

9 Hours To Dawn will have a smaller shooting budget than originally planned but the intense action, the thrills and spills won’t be sacrificed,” Earl said.

“[The]…budget will go towards transforming Sydney into a decaying urban jungle and special effects.”

Young director Adrian Powers (Scruples) will take on the role of 2nd unit director, assisting Earl while he is acting.

“I'd like to see him move up to features very soon. This is a great opportunity for him to do that without bearing all the responsibility,” Earl said.

The other two films Earl is looking at directing – The Messengers and Jolt – are still scheduled to be made in the US. His film Kali, which was set to be made in Nepal, has been delayed till next year due to further government discussions.

9 Hours To Dawn is scheduled to be filmed between October and December this year.

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