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:: Marion Pilowsky set for feature directorial debut

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

Producer turned writer/director Marion Pilowsky (My Last Five Girlfriends, Sleuth) will make her feature directorial debut with comedy The Call Back after securing production investment funding from Fox International Productions, Screen Australia and the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC). It will be distributed locally via 20th Century Fox Film Australia and has received Gender Matters: Better Deals support from Screen Australia.

Produced by Sue Murray (Charlie’s Country, Ten Canoes), David Willing (My Last Five Girlfriends) and Marion Pilowsky through Corner Table Productions Australia, The Call Back taps into the madness inflicted upon us when visitors overstay their welcome. Based on an original idea, it was written by Marion Pilowsky and Lee A. Sellars, and was supported during development by SAFC with the involvement of LA based script editor Dylan Wilcox.

Marion Pilowsky said: “After working in London for many years I returned to my hometown of Adelaide to focus on writing and directing. In the beginning it really struck me how alien I felt after being away for so long. As I readjusted to the vast differences in culture and mindset between Europe and Australia, it gave me an idea for a story that I felt many could relate to – the visitors from hell. This is a film about finding your true home, love, sex, food and bloody good Shiraz, as well as being my own personal ode to Australia.”

The Call Back is set in Adelaide and tells the story of Ronnie, a struggling restauranteur mired in debt. Three years ago she met British movie star Henry whilst he was filming in her hometown and despite declarations of love and the promise of an exciting future in London, the relationship ended when his movie wrapped, leaving her heartbroken. Now living with the good-hearted and loyal Jeff, Ronnie’s world is once again turned upside-down when Henry returns to Australia with his French lover Sophie in tow. Any possibility of fun quickly disappears into a fog of paranoia and truly appalling behaviour. The Call Back pitches a young couple against the visitors from hell, an insufferable duo who operate with the confidence of the anointed.

Graeme Mason, CEO of Screen Australia said: “We are delighted to have 20th Century Fox on board for a local Australian production. It is particularly exciting to see Marion Pilowsky making her feature film debut as director and together with a strong creative team, including veteran producer Sue Murray, bring this sophisticated comedy to life.”

Tomas Jegeus, President of Fox International Productions, said: “We see enormous potential in both Marion Pilowsky and The Call Back. The script made me laugh out loud and was a story with universal themes so we were super excited to jump on board a project that we believe will travel around the world.”

Andrew Cripps, President of International Theatrical Distribution at 20th Century Fox said: “The Call Back is exactly the kind of story that we feel will cross international boundaries. It speaks with a truly authentic local voice that will easily translate to an audience who look for films that reflect their own lives, especially through comedy.”

Marc Wooldridge, Managing Director of 20th Century Fox Film Australia, said: “We are thrilled to have found a female-driven comedy which has the potential to reach a wide audience. It is a delight to creatively collaborate with Marion Pilowsky as she prepares to direct a film that will deliver unexpected laughs, surprises and huge entertainment.”

Annabelle Sheehan, CEO of SAFC said: “Marion Pilowsky is a dynamic, creative South Australian filmmaker who has put together a fantastic project with significant national and international partners. Supporting a local voice to gain a global platform is central to SAFC’s goals and sustains our innovative feature film industry.”

Marion Pilowsky’s short films have screened at film festivals around the world including The Ride which was nominated for a Jury Prize at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. Her most recent film What We Know was the only Australian film invited to the prestigious Edinburgh Film Festival in 2016. She has worked with talent such as Anthony La Paglia, Ed Speleers and Joel Jackson.

The Call Back will shoot in Adelaide and its environs later in 2017, with casting to be announced shortly.




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