Press Release from NZFC
Principal photography has begun on AFTER THE WATERFALL, the debut feature from award-winning New Zealand writer/director Simone Horrocks, with actor Antony Starr (Outrageous Fortune, In My Father’s Den) in his first lead in a feature film.
Starr plays forest ranger John Drean, a father haunted by the disappearance of his four-year-old daughter, and the subsequent breakup of his marriage. Three years after John’s daughter Pearl vanished, he seems trapped forever by the pain and anger of the past. When John discovers his ex-wife Ana is pregnant – to the policeman in charge of his missing daughter’s case – a complex drama unfolds.
Set at Piha, on Auckland’s wild West Coast, AFTER THE WATERFALL was written by Horrocks, who based the story on 1999 novel The Paraffin Child by UK writer Stephen Blanchard. She cast Starr, best known for his award-winning dual role as twin brothers Van and Jethro West in long-running TV series Outrageous Fortune, after seeing his In My Father’s Den performance.
Alongside Starr, the film features Cohen Holloway (Eagle vs Shark, Until Proven Innocent), Sally Stockwell (The Ferryman, The Insider’s Guide To Happiness), Peter McCauley (Perfect Creature, Pallet On The Floor), and introduces recent Toi Whakaari/NZ Drama school graduate Maria Walker. The ensemble cast also includes Vicky Haughton, Brenda Kendall, Paul Gittins, Kip Chapman, Michelle Langston, Cherie James, and Elizabeth Hawthorne.
Simone Horrocks attracted international attention when she was a semi-finalist for the prestigious Sundance Institute/NHK Filmmaker’s Award in 2001. She has written and directed several short films, notably Spindrift, winner of the Best Panorama Short Film award at the Berlin Film Festival, and New Dawn, which was commissioned by the Edinburgh Film Festival to mark the launch of UK Film Four’s Lab.
AFTER THE WATERFALL is produced by Trevor Haysom (In My Father’s Den) and funded by The New Zealand Film Commission. The screenplay was developed with assistance from The New Zealand Film Commission and British Screen (now the UK Film Council). The film will be released in New Zealand in 2010 via Rialto. NZ Film is handling international sales.