A first look at Hugo Weaving in ‘Hearts and Bones’. (Photo: Paul Suesse)

Hugo Weaving will star opposite newcomer Andrew Luri in Hearts and Bones, writer-director Ben Lawrence’s feature debut that’s just begun shooting in Sydney.

Hearts and Bones follows a war photographer Dan (Weaving) who has returned home to Sydney from assignment. Haunted by years at war, he struggles to conceal his fear of imminent fatherhood and immerses himself in preparations for an upcoming exhibition of his work. This grabs the attention of Sebastian Aman (Luri), a Sudanese refugee whose village Dan had photographed 20 years earlier. As the bond between the two men develops, a startling revelation comes to light that sets both on an unexpected path.

Lawrence (Ghosthunter) – the son of Ray Lawrence (Lantana, Bliss) – penned the script with Beatrix Christian (Picnic at Hanging Rock), while Matt Reeder (The Little Death, Joe Cinque’s Consolation) of Night Kitchen Productions is the producer.

Weaving also stars in M4M, currently shooting in Melbourne.

Lawrence said: “When work on this script began in 2002, the world had just witnessed 9/11 and Australia had embarked on a war in Afghanistan that continues to this day.”

“The flow of refugees has since grown to numbers that haven’t been seen since World War II. Hearts and Bones is an urban mystery that explores Australia’s place in this changed world.”

“It’s a dream come true to be working with Hugo Weaving, who is undoubtedly one of his generation’s greatest actors. Having someone of Hugo’s calibre play alongside Andrew Luri, a South Sudanese Australian who has never acted, is such an exciting proposition and I can’t wait to see what Andrew will bring to this story.”

Reeder has worked with South Sudanese criminal lawyer, refugee and public speaker Deng Adut for community consultation to develop the story and scripting. South Sudanese filmmaker Ez Deng (Sunshine), also worked as a casting consultant for the film, and is a director’s attachment.

Hearts and Bones is a Night Kitchen Production with principal production funding from Screen Australia in association with Create NSW, and financed with support from Spectrum Films and Lemac.

Madman Entertainment will distribute in ANZ.


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