L-R: Henry Strand, Stacy Clausen, and Hannah Ogawa.

A mix of fresh faces and familiar favourites are along for the ride of ABC ME’s horror-comedy series Crazy Fun Park as filming begins in Melbourne.

Young actors Henry Strand, Stacy Clausen, Hannah Ogawa, Justin Holborow, and Pedrea Jackson lead the main cast, while there are also appearances from Judith Lucy, Kim Gyngell, Bernard Curry, Alexandra Schepisi, Katherine Tonkin, Kuni Hashimoto, Alicia Banit, Simon Burke, Sally-Anne Upton, and Anne Charleston.

Created by writer/director Nicholas Verso and produced by Joanna Werner, the series tells the story of Chester (Strand), an introverted teen who makes the incredible discovery that his recently deceased best friend, Mapplethorpe (Clausen), is one of a group of ghoulish teens who haunt the abandoned fun park on the edge of town.

Without rules, adults or the real world to get in the way, Chester truly believes that Crazy Fun Park is a place where the fun never stops. But the dead have much to teach the living and Chester soon learns that maintaining his friendship with Mapplethorpe might have dangerous consequences.

Verso will direct the series with Sarah Hickey and Adrian Russell Wills, and penned the episodes with Magda Wozniak, Craig Irvin, Enoch Mailangi, and Fury.

Werner produces with ABC executive producer Libbie Doherty and executive produces with Stuart Menzies and Bernadette O’Mahony.

Major production investment has come from Screen Australia and Film Victoria in association with the ABC. The Australian Children’s Television Foundation (ACTF) will distribute the series.

Doherty, who is also ABC head of children’s, said the broadcaster was proud to be the Australian commissioner of series that “broke new ground for younger audiences”.

“The Crazy Fun Park team is clearly having a blast as production gets underway,” she said.

“As rushes roll in, we are already seeing outstanding performances from the young cast – an impressive combination of lightness and depth.

“Nick’s powerful aesthetic and the world-class crew have created a visually stunning space for everyone to play in and the Melbourne locations look beautifully fresh.”

ACTF CEO Jenny Buckland backed the program to set its own benchmark for “what children’s television can be”.

“The ACTF is thrilled to be on the roller coaster with the Crazy Fun Park team and to be bringing this extraordinary, imaginative, high-end television series to the world,” she said.

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