Tony Radevski and Pete Ireland’s ‘Bogan Moths’ claims Just for Laughs win in Montreal

'Bogan Moths'

An animated comedy series about a community of bogong moths tempted away from their annual migrations by a suburb of low-income humans has impressed at the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal, triumphing in the Stand Up and Pitch competition.

Bogan Moths, co-created by Pete Ireland and Tony Radevski, follows the group of insects as they take refuge amongst humans while adopting their ‘bogan’ characteristics and paralleling their lives.

The moths all struggle with the temptation of artificial light to some degree – regular light bulbs (the softer stuff), and the blue zapper light (‘the hard stuff’). While the moths just try and live their lives, gentrification sets in in the form of a new airport – threatening to tear down their and the human’s homes.

After being selected as one of ten international concepts to compete across two strands – Track 1 and Track 2 in the pitching contest – Bogan Moths was crowned the winner along with Alannah Brittany’s Public Pooled. Ireland and Radevski will now receive support and mentoring from comedian and showrunner Anthony Q. Farrell and Schitt’s Creek executive producer Andrew Barnsley to further develop the idea.

Radevski, whose short Risen was named Best Sci Fi at the 2021 LA Shorts, said they began to create the project after noticing the similarity between bogong and bogan.

“We talked about it later and were laughing, so we started riffing on story ideas for anthropomorphic bogan moths,” he said.

“Between Pete’s ‘westie’ upbringing and my background as a child of immigrants, we’ve drawn from our own real experiences when developing the world into a full series concept.”

Following the creation of a proof-of-concept short in collaboration with Australian animator Andrew Martin, the project premiered at the Melbourne International Animation Festival, before going on to win Best Animation at the Made in the West Film Festival in Western Sydney.

Radevski said the pair would seek to progress interest in the concept once the WGA/SAG-AFTRA strikes are resolved, having had the opportunity to speak with representatives from Amazon, Adult Swim, and Warner Bros, among others at Just for Laughs.

Pete Ireland and Tony Radevski.

“We would also hope this international interest translates into Australian partners who can help the Bogan Moths reach as many Australian comedy/adult animation fans as possible,” he said.

“A Koala Man/Childish Deano/Yolo/Bluey/Bogan Moths crossover event maybe? We’d love to see Bingo allowed to use swear words.”

Also on the horizon for Radevski and Ireland is the LGBTIQ+ comedy Fanny Scat Investigates, where they serve as director and producer, respectively.

Created and written by Chris Aronsten, with Petra Lovrenčić producing alongside Ireland, the series stars show stars drag performer Trevor Ashley a middle-aged drag queen who, in the face of a changing world, turns to private investigating in order to make ends meet.

It will screen at the upcoming Queer Screen Film Festival in a double-bill with Brooke Satchwell-starrer Triple Oh!, on Friday, August 25.