“As women in the industry, we have often felt like participants in male-oriented stories,” said Midnight Madhouse Productions founders Ella Cannon and Jenna Rosenow. “We decided that there was no reason why we couldn’t be a part of pioneering the change we’d love to see. Midnight Madhouse was born to tell the stories that have never had their moment. We have always been drawn to the real-life stories of women’s strength throughout history so when we found The Tin Ticket, we knew we’d found a story that needed to be told.”
The Tin Ticket is a 2011 narrative non-fiction book by American writer Deborah J. Swiss. It tells the true but largely forgotten story of the British women transported to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania) to serve as “breeders and tamers”. This particularly story is told through the eyes of two Glaswegian young women who end up in Australia – where men outnumber women 9 to 1 – and must join a “sisterhood of discarded women whose fierce determination to survive is forged by a fiery spirit.” The intention is to develop the book into a TV series.
Ella Cannon‘s CV as an actor includes iZombie and Netflix film Trees of Peace, while Jenna Rosenow appeared on Neighbours and Netflix’s Firefly Lane. They have both been invited to speak about the project at the Cape Cod Museum of Art in Boston alongside author Deborah J. Swiss on June 23.
“Growing up, we had heard the convict origin story many times, but we had no idea how little we really knew,” they both say. “It was only after reading The Tin Ticket that we became aware of these women who endured endlessly at the hands of their captors and fought to become the heart and soul of the country we call home today, the founding mothers of modern Australia. They did not fight so valiantly only to be erased from their own story. This is our history, as Australians, and more importantly, as women. It is time we learned their names.”