Production has begun in Sydney onCleverman, a six-part drama series which has been described as “a bold new story-world where Aboriginal storytelling meets high concept genre drama”.
The cast includes Scottish actor Iain Glen (Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey), Frances O’Connor (The Missing), Deborah Mailman (The Sapphires), Hunter Page-Lochard (The Sapphires, Around The Block), Rob Collins (The Lion King) and Stef Dawson (The Hunger Games).
Being pitched as a “smart, sexy and dangerous drama”, Cleverman unspools in the near future where a group of non-humans are battling for survival in a world where humans are feeling increasingly inferior and want to silence, exploit and kill them. Central to the drama is the story of two estranged Indigenous brothers who are forced together to fight for their own survival.
Wayne Blair, who directed the Australian box office smash hit The Sapphires and the upcoming film Septembers of Shiraz with Adrien Brody and Salma Hayek, is lead director of the series. He will share directing duties with acclaimed filmmaker and actress Leah Purcell.
The cast also includes Ryan Corr (The Water Diviner, Wolf Creek 2), Tasma Walton (Mystery Road), Rarriwuy Hick (Redfern Now), Tony Briggs (The Slap), Australian stage and screen legend Robyn Nevin (Top of the Lake), Lynette Curran (Wentworth Prison) and veteran Indigenous actor Jack Charles (Gods of Wheat Street.)
The series is also a co-production between Goalpost Pictures (who produced The Sapphires) and Pukeko Pictures, who is associated with Weta Workshop, the famed New Zealand craft studio who has worked on Lord of the Rings Trilogy, The Hobbit Trilogy and Avatar. Weta Workshop, together with Jacob Nash from Bangarra Dance Company, will be producing the creature design with “otherworldly dreaming creatures” to emerge in the ‘real world’ dystopian landscape of the series.
Cleverman will screen on ABC TV in Australia.