South Australian productions on forced hiatus

The South Australian Film Corporation has been forced to relocate funding as two South Australian productions have been put on hold indefinitely after investment problems stunted their progression.

Greg McLean’s Wolf Creek 2 and children’s sci-fi TV series Resistance will not be going ahead in the immediate future, the South Australian Film Corporation announced yesterday.

As a result, the films’ funding would be relocated to thriller films The Babadook and The Fall.

The two delayed productions were tentpole projects for the state’s new $48m Adelaide Studios, which opened in August have been stayed relatively empty.

Wolf Creek 2 has been halted by contractual issues. In December, invester Geoffrey Edelsten filed documents with the Supreme Court to pull his investment of $5m after finding out he was the largest private investor in the production, with the rest of the reported $13m budget coming from government screen agencies.

Resistance, a $14m 30×26 episode co-production between Persistence Productions and Canada’s Shaftsebury Films was commissioned by the ABC.

Richard Harris, Adelaide Studios CEO told Encore: “We’re pretty confident Wolf Creek should be back in the next 12 months. We assume it will shoot in South Australia.”

When Encore last spoke with McLean, he said both pre- and post-production for the Wolf Creek sequel would be done in South Australia.

Harris said: “Resistance is more difficult to get an assessment on as we haven’t had discussions with the producers. It’s possibly more difficult to come back. I think our assessment is we won’t see it for a while. It’s going to get the pieces back together.”

The Australian reports the production has since needed to seek re-financing after the American Sci-Fi Channel pulled out of a pre-sale agreement.

Harris said the news really affected the crews: “The impact is on South Australian crews who have had uncertainty around work. Now we have certainty and we can move on and seek out more productions.”

As a result, the state’s film corporation has relocated $450,000 to films The Babadook and The Fall.

The films have a combined budget of $5.8m to inject an estimated $3.1m into the South Australian economy and employ 300 crew plus additional personnel.

The Babadook is a psychological horror written and directed by Jennifer Kent and produced by Causeway Films Pty Ltd, which received Screen Australia funding last week.

The Fall is a supernatural thriller set in the second Gulf War written by Evan Randall Green and directed by Nick Robertson.

Harris said there were also films the studios were in negotiations with, including Tracks produced by Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and co-produced by Julie Ryan, which received funding approval from Screen Australia in the recent round of investment and as Harris said “ticks a lot of boxes.”


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