Suitcase Murphy and XYZ Studios Join Forces to Produce ‘Australian Encounters’

Press Release

Presented with humour and verve, Australian Encounters is a short form animated series that celebrates ten historic encounters, each between a renowned Australian and an international mover and shaker.

Based on the long running and very popular Encounters column, created by Shane Maloney and Chris Grosz, and published in The Monthly magazine,
this informative, entertaining and often astonishing series starts on ABC1 at 6.55pm on Tuesday 30 July.

What happened when Bob Hawke locked horns with Frank Sinatra? When Lionel Rose sparred with Elvis? And when Enrico Caruso slipped a hot Italian sausage into Nellie Melba’s captive palm? In the great tradition of the Aussie yarn, Australian Encounters serves up the answers to these and many other equally intriguing questions. Indeed, each episode is a fabulous little story, based entirely on actual events.

Wonderfully narrated by Geoffrey Rush, the series is written, produced and directed by Duncan Imberger and Josh Moore of Melbourne based
production company Suitcase Murphy. Remarkably, all ten episodes were entirely hand drawn by Chris Grosz, the old-fashioned way, using pens and
watercolours. The beautiful, layered, and dynamic animation is the work of director Stephen Watkins and acclaimed animation house, XYZ Studios.

Grosz is a New Zealand born cartoonist, illustrator, graphic designer and set designer, who moved to Australian in the 1970s and made a name for himself designing concert posters for the likes of Bob Dylan, Devo, Tom Waits, Elvis Costello and Frank Zappa. Later, he worked as an art director for various Melbourne advertising agencies, including Clemenger Harvie, USP Needham, Kutt Skinner Bennet, JWT, MOJO, Saatchi & Saatchi, and Leo Burnett.

Australian Encounters also offers a fascinating insight into Australian history – touching on topics including late nineteenth century colonial society, World War I, Australian appeasement, Aboriginal rights, and popular culture.

Geoffrey Rush

Duncan Imberger & Josh Moore

Stephen Watkins & XYZ Studios

Chris Grosz

Shane Maloney

Gerry Connolly
Tyler Coppin
Lucy Holmes
David Cotter