The Bazura Project: TV for Film Buffs

It was Star Wars creator George Lucas that said "movies aren't released, they escape."

With less than a week before the premiere of The Bazura Project, Lee Zachariah has come to the conclusion that this sentiment also applies to television.

"There's always things that you look back and you wish you could have changed or done better," he says. "But those are things that only the filmmakers notice. I hope so, anyway."

The Bazura Project ( the title is a mysterious acronym for the audience to solve) had its first incarnation on community television. Starring Zachariah and co-creator Shannon Marinko, the program consisted of parodies of film classics, reviews, interviews and segments on film history.

The series – which was produced on an shoestring budget – ran on Channel 31 between 2006 and 2008, with the show winning the Antenna Award for Best Arts Program two years in a row.

"We were proud of what we could achieve with the money in our pockets," says Zachariah, a longtime contributor to IF Magazine.

After a long hiatus, ABC2 announced a reworking of the series earlier this year. ("We were bombarding them with threatening letters and lots of fish in newspapers," says Zachariah.)

The revamped version of the show  is a "Guide to Sinema," with each episode focusing on one of the six ingredients  – sex, violence, money, profanity, drugs and fame – that comprise cinema today.

"The sins of cinema aren't biblical sins, they're the things that drive Hollywood," Zachariah explains.

Filming of the six half-hour episodes commenced mid-May, running through to the end of July. 

Though the style of the original show remains, the structure has been changed – news and reviews eliminated in favour of "more elaborate set pieces." (For a taste, see the show's opening credits below.) At the Movies critic David Stratton features as Zachariah's therapist while Tangled's Kat Stewart acts as the show's entertainment reporter.

While filled with obscure film references and trivia on the history of cinema, Zachariah is positive the show will appeal to more than just movie buffs.

"It's very accessible," he says. "Comedy is the spoonful of sugar we're giving to hide the fact that we're teaching you about film."

The Bazura Project premieres on ABC2 at 9pm on Thursday September 29.