Three features promised production investment from Screen Australia are to be partly filmed outside of the country.

The films include Ariel Kleiman’s directorial debut Partisan and Robert Connolly’s “big family film” Paper Planes, which were promised production investment from Screen Australia this week.

Australian filmmakers are increasingly looking outward and these two films continue that trend.

So too does Ruin, the third film backed this time around by Screen Australia. Formerly known as Om Tuk, the drama has already been filmed in Cambodia by writer/directors Amiel Courtin-Wilson and Michael Cody.

Anna McLeish, who is producing with her business partner Sarah Shaw, told ScreeenDaily that Partisan, starring Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis), is expected to go into production in late September and will be filmed in Georgia, Europe and in Warp Films Australia’s home state of Victoria.

Kleiman has made a number of short films including Deeper Than Yesterday, which won a jury award at Sundance. The script for Partisan, written by Kleiman and Sarah Cyngler, one of the producers on that short, won the Mahindra Global Filmmaking Award at Sundance in 2012.

Madman Entertainment will release in Australia and New Zealand, and Protagonist Pictures is handling international excluding the US where UTA is representing.

Paper Planes is yet to be cast but is expected to go into production at the end of the year and will be partly filmed in Tokyo.

Connolly said he is looking forward to making a “big family film with Australian kids as the heroes” and expects the universality of paper planes to help the film to appeal locally and abroad.

He will be using Western Australian locations, just as he did for The Turning, which he is racing to finish in time for its world premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival.

Australia makes few films featuring children in lead roles. Exceptions include Nicole Kidman’s 1983 movie debut, the adventure film BMX Bandits and, rather more recently, The Rocket, which was filmed in Laos and won the audience award at this month’s Sydney Film Festival.

Connolly is exploring options to make Paper Planes in 3D.

Full details of the films are as follows:


  • Production company: Arenamedia
  • Producers: Robert Connolly, Maggie Miles, Liz Kearney
  • Writers: Robert Connolly, Steve Worland
  • Director: Robert Connolly
  • International sales: Arclight Films
  • Australian distributor: Footprint Films
  • Synopsis: Young Dylan, from a small outback town, dreams of competing in the world paper plane championships in Japan.


  • Production company: Warp Films Australia
  • Producers: Anna McLeish, Sarah Shaw
  • Director: Ariel Kleiman
  • Writers: Ariel Kleiman, Sarah Cyngler
  • Australian distributor: Madman Entertainment
  • International sales: Protagonist Pictures
  • Synopsis: A confronting tale about Alexander who, raised to see the world through Gregori’s eyes, is starting to think for himself.


  • Production company Flood Projects
  • Producers/directors/writers: Amiel Courtin-Wilson, Michael Cody
  • International sales: XYZ
  • Australian distributor: Madman Entertainment
  • Synopsis: A fable of violence and love in modern-day Cambodia.