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Monjo pens HBO pilot, Farscape movie

Game of Thrones. Peter Dinklage is in talks to star in the pilot for an HBO series scripted by Sydney-based Justin Monjo and produced by Ben Stiller.s Red Hour Films.

The prolific Monjo is also writing the screenplay for Farscape, a movie spin-off of the sci-fi series that ran on the Nine Network and the Sci-Fi Channel in the Us, for Jim Henson Productions, to be directed by Brian Henson.

Dinklage would play a dwarf detective in The Beasts of Valhalla, based on a series of novels by the late George C. Chesbro. Monjo read the books years ago but could not think of an actor who was right for the role of the sleuth named Mongo until he saw Dinklage in Game of Thrones.

.It.s a grounded sci-fi series,. says Monjo, who flies to New York next month to discuss the project with Dinklage, with whom he has corresponded.
See full article at IF.com.au »

The Inxs flap: screenwriter responds

Tina Hutchence.s scathing criticism of how the miniseries Inxs: Never Tear Us Apart portrayed her half-brother Michael and their family has puzzled screenwriter Justin Monjo.

Monjo, who co-wrote the Shine Australia drama with Dave Warner, hasn.t watched or read Tina.s interviews but insists the show is respectful of Michael and based on interviews with the surviving band members.

.I don.t know what she said but I don.t know how anyone would be upset,. Monjo told If today. .We did not interview her or her brother Rhett. The story was about the band and they were not part of the journey of these six guys.

.It is a respectful story of who Michael was an artist, how good his music was, and what he did for the band. I think anyone who saw it would think he was a wonderful musician who died tragically. You just had to like him.
See full article at IF.com.au »

Inxs miniseries goes out on high note

The finale of the Seven Network.s Inxs: Never Tear Us Apart drew 2.579 million viewers nationally and 1.768 million in the five metro cities last night.

While the national figure was down 200,000 on the premiere, the drama produced by Shine Australia easily won its timeslot.

Directed by Daina Reid and written by Dave Warner and Justin Monjo, the two-part series starred Luke Arnold, Nicholas Masters, Ido Drent, Andy Ryan, Alex Williams and Hugh Sheridan.

Seven said part one of Never Tear Us Apart was watched by 276,000 people on catch-up viewing in the past seven days, delivering a a total audience of 2.243 million in the five major markets.

Nine.s documentary Mayday Mayday: Terror on QF32, was weak opposition, pulling just 872,000 nationally (586,000 viewers in the metros).

Seven.s My Kitchen Rules maintained its ascendancy with 2.69 million viewers nationally (1.86 million)

However Nine.s The Block: Fans vs Faves posted its highest ratings so far,
See full article at IF.com.au »

Inxs miniseries smashes Corby

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The Nine Network.s gambit of moving the Schapelle Corby telemovie from Monday to Sunday night has backfired as the show was beaten comprehensively by the premiere of Seven.s Inxs: Never Tear Us Apart.

The Inxs drama produced by Shine Australia drew 1.974 million viewers in the 5 city metropolitan areas, dwarfing the 1.022 million for FremantleMedia.s Schapelle. The national audience was 2.88 million for the Inxs saga versus 1.339 million for Schapelle.

.I think most people are over Schapelle,. one former network programmer told If this morning. Either that or far more people were attracted to the story of the iconic band and the death of lead singer Michael Hutchence.

Directed by Daina Reid and written by Dave Warner and Justin Monjo, the two-part series stars Luke Arnold, Nicholas Masters, Ido Drent, Andy Ryan, Alex Williams and Hugh Sheridan.

In part 2, which airs this Sunday at 8.30pm, Hutchence finds a new love in Paula Yates,
See full article at IF.com.au »

Newcomer Barnett cast as Bono

Actor Brendan Barnett has landed the biggest role of his career, playing Bono in the Seven Network miniseries Never Tear Us Apart: The Untold Story of Inxs.

Now shooting in Melbourne, the two-part drama tells of the iconic band.s rise to the top of the international charts and the fall-out from frontman Michael Hutchence.s death in 1997.

A Vca graduate, Barnett has appeared on stage with the Bell Shakespeare Company and in short films and commercials. His only previous screen credit was an episode of Seven.s Winners & Losers.

Luke Arnold plays Hutchence, with Samantha Jade as Kylie Minogue, Georgina Haig as Paula Yates and Mallory Jansen as Helena Christensen.

The first drama production from Shine Australia, it.s scripted by Justin Monjo and Dave Warner and directed by Daina Reed.
See full article at IF.com.au »

Jade cast as Kylie in Never Tear Us Apart

The 2012 X Factor winner, singer Samantha Jade, makes her screen debut as Kylie Minogue in the Seven Network miniseries Never Tear Us Apart: The Untold Story of Inxs.

Billed as the uncensored story of the iconic band's rise to the top of the international charts and the aftermath of dealing with frontman Michael Hutchence's death in 1997, it's shooting in Melbourne.

Luke Arnold, who stars as Long John Silver in the Michael Bay-produced pirate adventure series Black Sails for the Us network Starz, plays Hutchence.

Georgina Haig (Fringe, The Elephant Princess) has been cast as Paula Yates and Mallory Jansen (Howzat! Kerry Packer's War) is Helena Christensen.

The first drama production from Shine Australia, it's scripted by Justin Monjo and Dave Warner. Daina Reed is the director and the producers are Kerrie Mainwaring and Andrew Prowse.

Newcomer Nicholas Masters is Tim Farriss with Ido Drent as Jon Farriss, Andy Ryan as Andrew Farriss,
See full article at IF.com.au »

Player’s bouncer at Nine highlights threat for it holding onto broadcast rights

Battle to hold onto rights

The unexpected entry of stand-in Australian cricket captain George Bailey into Channel Nine’s attempts to hold onto the Australian broadcasting rights has underlined the network faces its toughest battle to regain them after three decades.

Bailey went on the offensive yesterday after Nine’s head of sport Steve Crawley complained about Cricket Australia’s decision to rest batting powerhouse Dave Warner, captain Michael Clarke and dropping Mike Hussey altogether – saying viewers wanted to see them in action.

Bailey took the extraordinary step – for a player – to say Crawley’s comments were an attempt to drive down the price of the next five year’s worth of broadcasting rights being negotiated at the moment.

His attack follows predatory comments by the Ten Network’s chief operating officer Jon Marquard last month that over the first half of this year Ten will vigorously pursue the rights
See full article at Encore Magazine »

Shine confirms move into drama with Inxs mini-series

Production company Shine has confirmed earlier reports that it would expand from reality into drama with the announcement of mini-series Never Tear Us Apart: The Untold Story of Inxs.

Commissioned by Seven, the show “promises an authentic, behind the scenes look at what really happened – childhood mates from Sydney who were once the biggest rock and roll band in the world – beyond the music, the lights and the roar of a sell-out crowd,” according to a press release.

The two-part series will be executive produced by Mark Fennessy CEO and president of Shine Australia and Rory Callaghan, the company’s executive director.

While Shine has been one of Australia’s top reality production houses, Never Tear Us Apart will be the company’s first drama production. It follows the March appointment of Rory Callaghan, formerly of Southern Star, one of the premiere TV drama houses in the country.

Fennessy said:
See full article at Encore Magazine »

Screen Aus invests $700,000 across 23 projects in development

Screen Australia has committed almost $700,000 in development support across 23 feature projects.

Fifteen new projects have been added to Screen Australia.s development slate, while eight teams will receive continued support to develop their projects.

Two Australian filmmakers will also be supported to undertake overseas internships: producer Ma.ara Bobby Romia will work for six months with Screentime Group in New Zealand and director Ariel Martin-Merrells will work under the mentorship of director James Foley in Los Angeles for five months.

Screen Australia.s head of development Martha Coleman said in a statement: .Following a now well-established tradition, the development slate announced today includes a diverse range of compelling stories from both established and emerging filmmakers. The high calibre of screenplays coming through our door backs up positive feedback we are getting from the domestic and international marketplace and I.m looking forward to seeing the best of these projects make
See full article at IF.com.au »

Rupert Murdoch set to be next Aussie media mogul to get Howzat treatment

The story of Rupert Murdoch’s rise to become the world’s biggest media mogul looks set to become an Australian TV telemovie,

Screen Australia has provided funding development for the work which is being written by Bob Ellis and Stephen Ramsay.

The announcement comes days after Southern Star’s production of Howzat, the story of how Australian media mogul Kerry Packer took on the cricket establishment delivered the Nine Network with 2m+ ratings.

The series has the working title of The News of the World.

The British Sunday tabloid the telemovie is named after was closed by Murdoch last year in the wake of the phone hacking scandal.

Bob Ellis wrote the Australian journalism drama Newsfront and most recently ABC’s Infamous Victory: Ben Chifley’s Battle for Coal while Stephen Ramsey wrote and directed The Baby Boomers Picture Show and Flashbacks.

Ellis told Mumbrella: “What we have
See full article at Encore Magazine »

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