Based on the young adult novel My Life As An Alphabet, by Australian author Barry Jonsberg, adapted for the screen by writer/producer Lisa Hoppe, H is for Happiness follows Candice Phee (Perth based Daisy Axon, pictured), an ‘unflinchingly honest and optimistic twelve year old who is determined to bring her dysfunctional family back from the brink. Her exploits will inspire and delight anyone who has faced the trials of adolescence and the heartbreak of family tragedy,’ according to the press release.
The rest of the cast has also been revealed, with Richard Roxburgh, Emma Booth, Joel Jackson, Miriam Margoyles and Deborah Mailman playing the adults of the story, and newcomer Wesley Patton playing Candice’s friend Douglas Benson in the film. Patton had previously appeared in the short film Mrs McCutcheon from director John Sheedy, who will mark his feature debut with H is for Happiness.
“During the casting process we saw an extraordinary range of talent from all across Australia and New Zealand and I’m very excited to introduce the very talented young actor Daisy Axon, who is the perfect choice as our lead protagonist – I don’t think we would have found a better Candice Phee!” said Sheedy. “I am equally thrilled to collaborate once again with the incredibly charismatic young actor Wesley Patten – who appeared in my short film Mrs McCutcheon, and be a part of his feature debut as Douglas Benson. Two very gifted young actors who have a very big career ahead of them.
“I have always admired the works of Richard Roxburgh, Emma Booth, Joel Jackson, Deb Mailman and I’ve also been waiting a long time for the opportunity to work with the very naughty and brilliantly clever character actor Miriam Margolyes as Miss Bamford. A stunning cast whose talents will create the fine balance of humour and pathos needed to tell this very beautiful and charming story.”
Shooting the film is Bonnie Elliott (These Final Hours), with production design by Nicki Gardiner (short film The Defector) and costumes by Terri Lamera (Breath).
“We are so thrilled with the inimitable cast and creative crew set to bring this vibrant world to life. Coupled with the unique vision of our talented director John Sheedy, and the beautiful locations in Albany WA, we know we’re making something special for family audiences and anyone who enjoys a uplifting film experience.” said producer Julie Ryan.