Berlin International Film Festival 2020 To Feature The Top End

Berlin International Film Festival 2020 To Feature The Top End

Northern Territory Acting Minister for Tourism Sport and Culture Eva Lawler

Jobs-Generating Territory Film To Premiere At Berlin International Film Festival

Victor P Taffa

Top End will be on display to global audiences at next month’s prestigious Berlin International Film Festival, with local production High Ground selected to host its World Premiere at a red-carpet Gala Screening.

“Berlin International Film Festival is one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world, and to have a Territory film selected to have its World Premiere at the festival is phenomenal.” Acting Minister for Tourism Sport and Culture Eva Lawler said.

High Ground, directed by Stephen Maxwell Johnson, was filmed in Kakadu National Park and Western Arnhem Land, and stars the legendary Jack Thompson alongside internationally-acclaimed actor, Simon Baker and newcomer, Jacob Junior Nayinggul.

Northern Territory Government supported this project as part of our jobs-generating investment in the screen industry. High Ground attracted $2.1 Million of external investment and generated $2.5 Million of production expenditure.

“It was a wonderful experience to once again collaborate with the Yolngu and Bininj communities and their leaders, a process started many decades ago when we made the film clip ‘Treaty’ for Yothu Yindi.” Director, Stephen Maxwell Johnson said.

This delivered a boost for the Northern Territory economy and supported Northern Territory jobs our top priority. Showcasing the Northern Territory to the world will also deliver benefits for our tourism industry, another important jobs-generator.

This gripping drama is set in the 1900’s at a pivotal time in the Territory’s history.

Production companies behind the film are Maxo Studios, Bunya Productions and Savage Films with the producing line-up featuring David Jowsey, Maggie Miles, Witiyana Marika, Greer Simpkin and Stephen Maxwell Johnson. Many Traditional Owners are Executive Producers on the film, including Jonathan Nadji and Alfred Nayinggul.

“I loved making High Ground and being in my first film role. I’m hoping it will make our old people proud. For me it’s dedicated to all Australian First Nations people, paying respect to those who have gone before.” Actor/Producer Witiyana Marika said.

Northern Territory Government invested $400,000 in the project as part of its record $9 Million investment over 4 years into the screen industry.

70th Berlin International Film Festival runs from 20 February-1 March 2020.