David Appelbaum (third from left) shows Paul Fletcher (second from left) and Danny Pearson (far left) around the set of 'La Brea' last year.

Victoria will again open itself up for NBCUniversal drama La Brea, which is returning to the state for a second season.

Created by David Appelbaum and produced by Universal Television with Keshet Studios, the series follows a family that tries to survive after they are separated by a massive sinkhole that mysteriously opens in Los Angeles.

The cast includes Nicholas Gonzalez, Eoin Macken, Natalie Zea, John Seda, and Aussie actors Rohan Mirchandaney and Chloe De Los Santos.

The first instalment was the biggest TV project to shoot in Victoria in more than a decade, lured to Australia by a $9.66 million grant from the Federal Government’s Location Incentive Program.

A further $16 million from the incentive will go towards the second season, with the expectation that more than $118 million will be put into the economy and 390 jobs created, with the production set to use the services of 800 local businesses.

Universal Studio Group and Matchbox Pictures will also partner with the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS) on a training initiative dedicated to virtual production.

Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, Paul Fletcher, said the production would provide another opportunity to create a pipeline of jobs to develop the next generation of screen industry professionals.

“The return of this series to Australia is a testament to our talented screen sector and stunning landscape, which both caught the attention of viewers across the globe and earned La Brea a nomination at the 2021 People’s Choice Awards,” he said.

In announcing the renewal of La Brea at the end of last year, NBC said the drama had reached 47 million viewers across linear and digital platforms since its launch on September 28, while also being the number one program among the 18-49 demographic.

Matchbox Pictures COO Matt Vitins described the series return as “flagship international television”.

“It is the type of project that proves and extends the capacity of the Australian screen industry,” he said.

“We are thrilled at the success of season one and to be working again with Universal Television and Keshet Studios on season two.”

Universal Television president Erin Underhill said Australia proved to be the ideal setting to bring La Brea to the small screen.

“Paul Fletcher, the Australian Government, and local creative industry helped support the success of the series, and we’re looking forward to giving back to the community with our new training initiative,” she said.

Appelbaum executive produces with Avi Nir, Alon Shtruzman, Peter Traugott, Rachel Kaplan, Steven Lilien, Bryan Wynbrandt, and Ken Woodruff.

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