Documentaries on the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami, mining uranium and road train drivers traversing the Outback have received funding from Screen Australia.
Other recipients of the International Documentary Program are a second series of ABC-TV’s Redesign My Brain and Death or Liberty, an account of how political radicals exiled to Australia in the 19th century helped to create the world's first true democracy.
All told the agency is investing more than $1.7 million in the five projects, triggering more than $6.8 million worth of production.
“With two single-hour projects, two series and a feature-length project funded this round, it is a strong and diverse finish for the end of the financial year,” said Liz Stevens, Screen Australia senior manager documentary.
“In addition, working with international partners is a great way to grow the pie for Australian producers. These producers will work with American, Irish, English and German broadcasters on some exceptional programs.”
After the Wave: The World’s Greatest Forensic Detective Story, from writer/director Amanda Blue, will recount the Boxing Day tsunami which killed more than 200,000 people. The feature-length film will trace the efforts of the Australian-led forensic operation in Thailand to identify and return home the bodies of more than 5,000 victims. The producer is Flaming Star Films' Lavinia Riachi for SBS and Discovery UK.
Writer/director Wain Fimeri and Genepool Productions' Sonya Pemberton’s Uranium – Twisting the Dragon’s Tail tells the untold story of what is described as the most wondrous and terrifying rock on Earth in a three-part series for SBS Australia and US public broadcaster PBS. Filmed in Russia, Japan, North America, Europe and Australia, with scientist Dr Derek Muller as the presenter, it examines the opposing views of uranium as a source of clean, limitless power or the nightmare of a silent and poisoned Earth.
Truck It follows road train drivers as they battle against the odds on some of the toughest and most demanding journeys across Australia, directed by Roger Power and produced by Prospero Productions' Ed Punchard and Julia Redwood for the Seven Network.
Roar Film’s Death or Liberty, written by Tony Moore, Steve Thomas and Keith Farrell, and directed by Steve Westh and Keith Farrell, will chart the work of the political activists exiled to Australia. The producers are Steve Thomas, Kath Symmons, Anna Grieve and Rebecca O’Malley for ABC TV.
The second series of writer/producer Todd Sampson’s Redesign My Brain will investigate ways to train the brain to be resistant to modern-day psychological problems. The three-part series is directed by Jeff Sibbery and co-written by Paul Scott and produced by Isabel Perez for ABC TV, Discovery Networks International and Discovery Science US.