JIRGA – interview with Benjamin Gilmour and Sam Smith

by GREG KING Jirga is a new Australian drama that was filmed in Pakistan by filmmaker Benjamin Gilmour. It stars Stan Smith in his feature film debut as former Australian soldier, Mike Wheeler, who returns to Afghanistan after several years, seeking redemption from the family of a civilian man he killed during the war. Greg chatted with the writer/director Benjamin Gilmour and star Sam Smith about the origins of the film, shooting in Pakistan, the challenges they faced, especially when the original financing fell through following death Continue reading

ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2018 – interview with Valeria Solarino

by GREG KING The Italian Film Festival is screening at Palace Cinemas across the country throughout September. One of the special guests of the festival this year is actress Valeria Solarino, who has three films screening. She will be opening the festival in both Sydney and Melbourne before taking part in a Q&A session for her film There’s No Place Like Home, which has been directed by Gabriele Muccino. Valeria also appears in Quanto Basta (As Needed), and I Can Quit Whenever I Want 3: Ad Honorem, the third film in Sydney Sibilia’s popular comedy series. Greg Continue reading

CZECH AND SLOVAK FILM FESTIVAL 2018 – interview with Cerise Howard

by GREG KING The 6th Czech and Slovak Film Festival acknowledges the 50th anniversary of the Prague Spring as well as the centenary of the establishment of Czeckoslovakia. This year the program focuses on some historic films from Czech filmmakers, including The Fireman’s Ball, Milos Forman’s final film in his native country before moving to the US. The Fireman’s Ball closes the festival this year. There is a special screening of Ecstasy, a 1933 film starring Heddy Lamarr, which will be accompanied by a live music score on the Melbourne Town Hall grand organ, played by Continue reading

AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE – interview with Grant Dodwell

by GREG KING Actor Grant Dodwell is well known to local audiences through his roles in long running and popular television series like A Country Practice. Grant is also one of the co-founders and the creative director for the Australian National Theatre, which brings Australian plays to audiences. The ANT’s latest initiative involves filming the plays live and taking them to audiences via cinemas around Australia and regional areas. The first such screening will be The Dapto Chaser, a gritty, warts and all comedy written by Mary Rachel Brown, about a family heavily Continue reading

BOOK WEEK – interview with Heath Davis

by GREG KING The sophomore feature film for writer/director Heath Davis Book Week has its premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival on August 15. It screens again on August 18. Book Week follows high school English teacher, Nicholas Cutler (played by Alan Dukes) who thinks his life is about to change for the better when he learns his trashy zombie novel is going to be published. But his life soon becomes seven days of hell. His novel is passed over in favour of one written by a precocious student he teaches. A girlfriend’s ultimatum, a student in trouble with Continue reading