Press release from Sparke Films

Sparks are set to fly on the Gold Coast as a momentous WW1 feature film is now in development at the Village Roadshow studios. The 34th Battalion is the story of the real life Army Battalion out of Maitland, New South Wales which follows them to the western front during 1916-1918. The film intends to capture the audience and have them witness the mateship, courage, triumphs and tierney of the ANZAC’s. Primary filming will take place on the Gold Coast with a brief shoot on the North Coast of New South Wales

To represent and personify these remarkable men in history, the production is currently in negotiations with Nick Farnell, Vince Collosimo, Henry Nixon, Andrew Lees, Khan Chittenden, Ashley Zukerman & Claire Van Der Boom, The international cast will be announced as the production progresses.

Chair of Council’s Economic Development and Tourism Committee, Councillor Jan Grew, said the Gold Coast was proud to have Australian films such as The 34th Battalion produced in the region.

"Each year, the film industry on the Gold Coast injects upwards of $80 million into the economy, and accounts for 75 per cent of all Queensland film production," said Cr Grew. “Gold Coast City Council has recognised the importance of film for the region, with Business Gold Coast’s Investment Attraction and Film Gold Coast initiatives helping secure this production by Sparkefilms.

"We are very excited that a film written and developed in Queensland with a top Australian cast will be filmed right here on the Gold Coast."

The film is being executive produced and co-written by Ian Sparke, (2010 AFI nominee for Beneath Hill 60 as Costume Designer).”We are very excited to be able to tell this remarkable story. I myself am extremely passionate about this film. It’s been a long, hard road and I look forward to seeing it come to fruition.”

Luke Sparke, who is one of the executive producers and co-writer, is making his directorial debut. 'We are very pleased and proud to bring this major film to the Gold Coast. The 34th Battalion is going to be big. I am also very proud to be employing many talented local Queenslanders in important crew roles. I'm looking forward, after 20 years of research, to showing the world this important ANZAC story.'

Steve Cooper, Managing Director of one of Australia's leading film and TV post production companies The Post Lounge, recently joined the 34th Battalion team as Executive Producer. He brings more than 35 years of industry experience to the project.

The production has also secured the talent of veteran director of photography Nino Martinetti (“Bad Karma”, “Sabrina Down Under”). The production has also been lucky enough to have the casting direction of Tom Mc Sweeney and David Newman who individually cast THE GREAT RAID and THE PACIFIC and this will be their first project together as a team.

Shooting will commence in early September 2012 and will be set for worldwide release in 2013.

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