by Dov Kornits

In Christopher Nolan style, if you spell the title backwards, you may get a better idea of what the film is about.

Caleb Landry Jones (The Dead Don’t Die [above], Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) will play the lead character in what is being reported as a study of a man being driven to do something as horrific as 1996’s Port Arthur Massacre. Interestingly, there have been a number of projects doing the rounds that were looking to explore Martin Bryant, however, the sensitivity of the subject matter may have proven too hard for anyone to give the green light. Reportedly, NITRAM will explore what happened leading up to the horror, not dissimilar to Kurzel/Grant’s Snowtown.

Judy Davis and Anthony LaPaglia have been cast as the protagonist’s parents, with Essie Davis (Kurzel’s IRL partner) as a friend.

The announcement about the film came via Stan, who have come aboard the project early, unlike True History of the Kelly Gang, which the streamer acquired well after completion.

“Stan is pleased to again collaborate with Justin Kurzel and Shaun Grant and we have complete faith in the NITRAM team’s creative vision and ability to handle the film’s subject matter with sensitivity and respect,” said Stan’s Chief Content Officer, Nick Forward.

NITRAM is on board for theatrical distribution, Wild Bunch International on worldwide sales, and producing are Virginia Whitwell and Nick Batzias of GoodThing Productions (The Australian Dream).

One year ago, almost to the date, Shaun Grant and Justin Kurzel were announced as collaborating on a series adaptation of Richard Flanagan’s acclaimed novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North, however, NITRAM will be made before then, promising to be in cinemas and on Stan in 2021.

  • Jennifer
    30 November 2020 at 10:36 pm

    “study of a man being driven to do something as horrific as 1996’s”

    Being DRIVEN to mass murder? That’s exactly the kind of careless framing that removes blame from the perpetrator and one of many reasons why so many people in Tasmania are concerned about this film.

    The big difference between this film and their others is that nobody is currently spreading denialist conspiracy theories about the other two events. This is going to be grist for a very dangerous mill.

  • Jacki
    1 December 2020 at 12:31 pm

    Hell no. Who do these two idiots think they are. This is a dangerous uneccessary move. NOBODY wants this story, NOBODY wants it relived or to “understand” a killer as devoid of empathy as him. There is nothing to understand. He was not “driven” to it, he got there all by himself. Even the title is a cutesie gimmick. This should not be allowed off the cutting room floor. I’m disgusted it’s even being discussed as a possibility. If these two “film-makers” can’t find original or at least better material they should find another profession, – Another angry Tasmanian

  • Michael Englert
    Michael Englert
    2 December 2020 at 8:58 am

    Let a sacred silence remain over this terrible ordeal out of Respect for the families and survivors. I hope the actors pull out of this project.

  • Bruce
    2 December 2020 at 1:13 pm

    Leave your creativity out of this dreadful event. It is brutal history, not a prop for your imagination. I have researched lots of historical Australian murders that carry far more intrinsic messages about inequalities and cruelties in our society. The Port Arthur Massacre has been covered in greater detail than any other event in our history.
    There are rumours that a story about a government conspiracy behind the killings are being touted for this film because of the gun law legislations that followed…we don’t need conspiracy theories like the one that followed Sandy Creek. We deserve the truth and anyone who needs a Hollywood dressing up of this cruel event can’t handle the truth. That said, for those who are truly interested beyond mere titillation, there are many detailed researched books and documentaries detailing all the relevant issues on this sad event.
    Put your creative talents to more productive use. I will boycott this movie and Stan, if its released and encourage others to do the same.

  • Nathan Mason
    Nathan Mason
    2 December 2020 at 9:14 pm

    It’s a movie. Get over it. If you don’t want to see it then bloody don’t watch it.

    • Mark
      3 December 2020 at 3:53 pm

      So child pornography is ok with you? To help with everybody, get over it? Don’t like don’t watch? Moron..

    • Mark
      3 December 2020 at 4:00 pm

      You’re obviously too young to have been around when it happened so you’ve really got no idea what you are talking about. Imagine your family or something you love, if you know what that is, being senslessly murdered then someone else making money from the story. It’s not just a movie , it’s peoples lives..

  • Mike
    2 December 2020 at 9:33 pm

    Justin Kurzel and Shaun Grant reunite!
    The families and friends of the murdered victims will never reunite with their loved ones. Sickened and hope the film industry as a whole shun it.

  • Mark
    3 December 2020 at 3:56 pm

    As with everybody here and around Australia, we didn’t ask for this film , absolutely no-one wants it and im disgusted by the thought of these parasite filmmakers profiting from the grief of others

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