Parkinson's Disease is not something one usually associates with young women coming into their prime. But that was the story for 29 year old design wizard, Emma Lawton. Now 5 years into her diagnosis, she hasn't taken it sitting down. Having just completed a 365 video-a-day project (available on her YouTube channel), Ems has just launched a crowd funding campaign over at threesixfives.com, aimed at building a community for people with long term health issues. She's also done a bunch of amazing Ted talks, and recently picked up stand up comedy. Somewhere she found the time to join me in the chat cave to talk about it all.
You'd be forgiven for thinking that the music for Ron Howard's film Rush, the 12 Monkeys TV series, and video game Medal of Honour, were all composed by different people. But composer and musician Bryce Jacobs has found a way to stand out from the crowd, through diversifying not only his compositions and playing, but also his mentality about it all. From engineering his own 7 octave guitar, to working for Hans Zimmer's Remote Control Productions, it's a podcast ramble of epic proportions when Bryce joins me in the chat cave.
Australia's most tattooed Adult Star, Monte Luxe, joins me in the chat cave this week to uncover an industry that always fascinates, but is rarely spoken about. From starting out in Cairns, being in difficult relationships, the first time she stepped on set, and finding her niche as an alternate porn star, Monte sheds a lot of light on this mysterious life.
Having worked on over 1400 productions in a 40+ year career, Ron Brown felt there was something missing in the Australian industry. He, along with Alan Finney, hatched a plan to create Australia's first (and only) on demand service for Aussie conntent, OzFlix. And this Saturday (April 7th), they hold the first ever OzFlix Independant Film Awards. From touring around the world with his father, who worked in distribution and sales for Universal, working in post production on the first Mad Max, all the way through to starting up OzFlix, it's a ramble of epic proportions when Ron joins me in the chat cave.
DMNDR is a movement, it's a paradigm shift, it's a revolution - and it's founder, John Belitsky, is in love with chaos. From finance on wall street, and a cab ride across the USA, to establishing a 20,000 square foot artistic space in New York City, John is taking the supply back, and giving you what you demand.
Visit www.dmndr.com for the revolution.
That's Not My Dog opens nationally in cinemas this week, and one the film's joke telling stars returns to the chat cave! Michala Banas catches me up on the last 3 years of her life since we first spoke, we talk about relationships, auditioning in Los Angeles, as well as a deep tangent that winds up in a discussion about the me too movement.
The Play That Goes Wrong has taken the comedy world by storm. From a small one hour show that played at Edinburgh Fringe, and above a pub, to the toast of the West End, Broadway, and now the rest of the world, this is a true story of how something can explode. One of the original creators of the show, Dave Hearn, pops into the chat cave to give us the inside word.
The Quiet American. Patriot Games. Salt. The Bone Collector. Newsfront. Revenge. A few days after being awarded the AACTA Lifetime Achievement Award, legendary film director Phillip Noyce turns his home into the ramble room. From being part of a groundbreaking new wave of filmmakers in Australia, to working with the biggest stars in Hollywood, Phillip's pretty much seen it all.
The Young Girl Project is an autobiographical exploration of memory and the subconscious. It's an evolving project of drawings, paintings, video and sound. In the YGP, Choichun Leung takes you into the personal world of the 'young girl’, the silence of sexual abuse and the system of patriarchy in the control of women and children. Here, she tells the story behind the project.
For more of Choi's work, visit www.choichun.com or find her on instagram, @choichunleung.
Bernie Brown is a series built on the very grit and determination that inspired the beginning of this podcast. A team of people putting their money where their mouths are, to force the creative life that they have dreamed of. Today, one of the shows producers, and it's lead actor, enter the chat cave to tell me the story.
Emo The Musical is a new spin on a old tale. It's Romeo & Juliette, but with an Emo & a Christian. You can find it on all On Demonad services via www.emothemusical.com. It's part of a brilliant new wave of commercially viable, slightly subversive, Australian feature films, and it's writer/directr Neil Triffett isn't shying away from all the tropes. Along with producer, Lee Matthews, Emo The Musical comes under a rambly microscope, as I find out what it takes to get your first feature film up off the ground.
Eli Erez, my high school drama teacher & the director of countless productions i was in, gave me the chutzpah necessary to pursue my artistic passion. A big through line of this podcast has been "that teacher that put an arm around my shoulder, and made it safe for me to follow my creative impulses". So today, 15 years since I last stepped into a drama class room, I go to the source - as Eli steps into the chat cave, and I find out what it's like to inspire young minds.
From Sideliners to Who's Line is it Anyway, Whovians, Bounce, and the controversy around the Liverpool vs Sydney FC match, Tegan Higginbotham returns to the chat cave to catch up on the last 3 years. Naturally, it gets silly.
The life of a model isn't just about looking good on camera. They train their bodies like elite athelets, and make big sacrficies to keep their careers in flow. But the mental anxiety and strain placed on these young women is too often overlooked. Grace Quealy got close to the pinnacle in NYC - Victoria's Secret - before coming back to Australia to make a shift in her career. In this very honest appraisal, she reflects on her years in the modelling industry, and the road to becoming an actor slash model.
Supergirly created a storm in the United Kingdom for Lulu McClatchey, going from a small venue performer, to Madonna & Elton Johns' parties, seemingly overnight. Her story takes us from Ringwood to London, and back again, as she jumps in the chat cave for the first new ramble of 2018.
3x Olympic Gold Medal winner, Stephanie Rice rounds out the CUN Retrospective. The chance to speak with her was, pardon the pun, golden, and certainly one of my favourite conversations. Her views, her achievments, her evolution - all mind blowing.
Recovery. Just what everyone needs on New Years Day. Following on from my replay of episode 2 with Michala Banas from last week, I've decided to dedicate this week to 5 episodes from the first 18 months of Coming Up Next, starting with the former host of ABC's Recovery, Dylan Lewis.
Upper Middle Bogan. McLeod's Daughters. Avenue Q. As the year 2017 draws to a close, instead of a clip show, I decided to step into the time machine, and go all the way back to Episode 2, when I welcomed Michala Banas into the chat cave. It's a trip down memory lane, without the alternate reality.
YID! have not yet been together for a year, but already they are attracting the interest of the broader Australian music audience. They'll be hitting the stage at WOMAdelaide in 2018, and are currently raising money to fund their first recording. The brain child of the 22 piece fusion band, Simon Starr, jumps into the ramble room, to talk on his dual lives between Australia & Israel, a 25 year career in music, and the thinly veiled mask of normality that hides his silly.
Oscar Winning Producer, Shan Ogilvie, never thought he'd hear his film's name called at the Academy Awards. When he & his team set out to make their short film, Stutterer, they just wanted to get it into one film festival. 4 months later, they were holding the grand daddy of all awards. Step into the ramble room to hear how it all happened.
Space. The final frontier. Not many people get to traverse the earth's atmosphere, and see this big blue marble in all it's glory. Not many people get to circumnavigate it once every 90 minutes. Terry Virts, author & photographer for National Geographic book, View From Above, is one of the rare few. And today, he joins me in the chat cave for a zero gravity ramble.
Chet Faker. Benjamin Booker. Playing to arenas of over 70, 000. Or on Ellen. Life on the road isn't easy, except when you get to ramble on Coming Up Next in London. Sam Hirschfelder (son of well known composer & musician, David) invites me to sound check while he's touring with rock/punk project, Benjamin Booker, and we get into it.
The Carnation Kid. Australian Idol. These are two of the pillars of the creative life that Mark Holden has lead. His book, My Idol Years, starts at a critical point in 2007 when he was about to be fired from Australian Idol, which would springboard him over to a career as a barrister. He welcomes me to set up a chat cave in his home, and we ramble.
As the Emmy-nominated host of National Geographic Channel’s #1 rated and Emmy-nominated series, Brain Games, Jason Silva left audiences in state of wonderment. Audiences have enjoyed his mind-bending insights through TED talks, SXSW lectures, Microsoft TechEd Australia presentations, a guest feature on Neil deGrasse Tyson’s Star Talk, and an appearance on Australia’s Q&A in 2012. Like all the best communicators, Silva’s strength is a tangible excitement for his subject matter. In his signature rapid-fire delivery style, he pulls from a vast mental repository of tech knowledge and quotes from fellow futurists and artists to create an exhilarating, immediate experience. In November, let Think Inc. and Jason Silva pull you out of your intellectual comfort zone and launch you into a flight of possibilities.
The year is 2005. The location is Prahran in Melbourne. Day 1 of film school. Day 1 of Damien Csehi. He's a writer, a musician, a filmmaker, and a full time joke thinker-uperer. From Mooroolbark to Los Angeles and all the way to Ireland, a pun fuelled ramble takes us on his crazy adventure. Come this way, as he sifts through his creative constipation.
Sisters, the new Channel 10 series from the creators of Offspring, begins October 25th 2017. During her busy shooting schedule, one of the leading ladies, Maria Angelico, made the time to come and have a good old ramble, and chat about her experience leading the line, creating her own show, Movement, as well as working with Chris Lilley, and on the stage.
The Kettering Incident. The Bill. Water Rats. Blue Heelers. Storytelling runs through the veins of Vicki Madden. As a writer, Showrunner, and producer, she is doing some amazing things for the screen industry in Australia.
QiGong is a holistic system of coordinated body posture and movement, breathing, and meditation used for health, spirituality, and martial arts training. If you could feel in your power, present & grounded at will, what difference would it make? Long time listners will know what an impact QiGong has had in my life, so I've turned to my teacher for this week's podcast, as he lifts the lid on the practice. For more information, visit https://www.embodyingman.com/.
Having worked with bands such as Gotye, Aloe Blacc, Greenday and more, Darcy Prendergast is an internationally recognised music video director. He is the founder of Melbourne based production company, Oh Yeah Wow, who have made some ground breaking music videos, as well as moving into narrative work, and TV commercials. He's the creator of the Nickelodeon mini series, 'Supa Phresh', and the director of the whimsical 'Gary & Gabe'. To check out their work, including pieces we chat about in this episode, head to ohyeahwow.com.
Bruce H. Lipton, PhD is an American developmental biologist best known for discovering that genes and DNA can be manipulated by a person's beliefs and environment. He is the author of the bestselling book, The Biology of Belief, and is a former researcher at Stanford University’s School of Medicine. He is an internationally recognized leader in bridging science and spirit. For more info, visit www.brucelipton.com
As long time listeners will know, I’ve been working with Samuel & Connie Johnson on the filmmaking side of their Love Your Sister charity for over 6 years. And with Connie’s passing this past week, I wanted to share an episode that I think is one of the most intimate, as Sam & I speak on the year we spent together on the road for Love Your Sister, as well as a whole lot of philosophical nonsense. This one is dedicated to the mother of Love Your Sister. She showed me how to jam it all into life, and I’ll forever be grateful for that, and for letting me point a camera in her face for 6 years.
That's Not Me opens in Palace Cinemas this Thursday, September 7th, across Australia. The writers-directors-actors-producers-distributors of the film drop into the chat cave, to talk about their pathways to their first feature, writing the thing in Paris, and an unfortunate, shitty, gastro story. For more info on the film and sessions, visit www.thatsnotmefilm.com.
The Inheritance. Jet Trash. Tom Hardy. Charles Henri Belleville made his debut feature film, The Inheritance, featuring one Tom Hardy, for 5 thousand pounds, in 11 days. It would take him a further 10 years to get his next feature film, Jet Trash, out into the world. He's now completing his third film, and in preproduction on his fourth. How did he get here?
Anis Mojgani is a two time National Poetry Slam Champion, winner of the International World Cup Poetry Slam, and multiple-time TEDx Speaker. His work has appeared on HBO, NPR, and in the pages of such journals as Rattle, Forklift Ohio, Paper Darts,Thrush, and Bat City Review. Anis is the author of three poetry collections, all published by Write Bloody Publishing: Songs From Under the River, The Feather Room, Over the Anvil We Stretch. His latest book, The Pocketknife Bible, is a fully illustrated poetry-memoir. You can find all his works and tour info at thepianofarm.com. Poems featured in this episode: 1. Closer; 2. Shake The Dust; 3. For those who can still ride an aeroplane for the first time.
Kim Dotcom: Caught In The Web is the expertly crafted documentary from veteran filmmaker, Annie Goldson. It tells the story of Kim Dotcom, the founder of MegaUpload, and presents the case (compellingly) for both sides of the argument. You can find information about upcoming screenings & talks at miff.com.au.
GG Allin. Bjork. Tommy Seebach. These musicians all have one thing in common -- they've been put under the microscope by documentary filmmaker, Sami Saif. Sami is out in Melbourne as a part of the Melbourne International Film Festival. He stopped by the chat cave to speak on his film The Allins, as well as his career, and what makes him silly. You can find info about upcoming sessions at miff.com.au
Porto. Double Play. Working with Jim Jarmusch. Richarld Linklater & James Benning. Discovering films as a means of escaping a lonley life in Barcelona, indie film force Gabe Klinger finds himself at the Melbourne international Film Festival with his second feature, Porto. How did he get here? What does he really think about pirating films? And what makes him silly?
Sharon Salzberg is a central figure in the field of meditation, a world-renowned teacher and NY Times bestselling author. She has played a crucial role in bringing meditation and mindfulness practices to the West and into mainstream culture since 1974, when she first began teaching. She is the co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society and the author of ten books including NY Times bestseller, Real Happiness, her seminal work, Lovingkindness and, Real Love, her latest release by Flatiron Books. Acclaimed for her humorous, down-to-earth teaching style, Sharon offers a secular, modern approach to Buddhist teachings, making them instantly accessible. She is a regular columnist for On Being, a contributor to Huffington Post, and the host of her own podcast: The Metta Hour. For more information, visit www.SharonSalzberg.com.
The Death & Life of Otto Bloom is the debut feature film from Writer/Driector Cris Jones. After attending the VCA, Cris began collaborating with academy award winning Producer, Melanie Combs, the two having created quite a formidable creative partnership. The Death & Life of Otto Bloom is set to be released for consumer content on August the 9th, you can purchase the film on DVD, as well as on all your digital platforms, including Foxtel On Demand, Google Play, Bigpond Movies, and iTunes.
Snarky Puppy's frontman, Michael League comes back to the chat cave to talk about his new project, Bokante. Bokanté – meaning ‘exchange’ in Creole – is eight outstanding musicians from four continents. Their debut album, Strange Circles, goes from a Zeppelin-esque blues stomp to folkloric Caribbean kaladja. Lyrically, it reflects struggles we all face, and what Bokanté wants to see in the world – connection, unity and love through exchange. And now, they’re taking that sound around the world. You can purchase their album at www.bokante.com
Rabbi Mendel Kalmenson is the rabbi of Beit Baruch and executive director of Chabad in Belgravia, London. Mendel was an editor at the Judaism Website—Chabad.org and is also the author of the popular books Seeds of Wisdom and A Time to Heal. You can find Rabbi Mendel’s writings at chabad.org, and his books are available at jemstore.com.
Theme song composed, performed and produced by nicholas marks, featuring Yotam Ben-Or (Harmonica) and Almog Sharvit (double bass)
Summer Heights High. Angry Boys. Open Slather. Laura Waters is the woman behind one of Australia’s foremost production companies, Princess Pictures. She’s the woman behind the man that is Chris Lilly, having produced all of his shows, and establishing herself as one of the preeminent figures in Australian film and television. One of her latest projects, My Year 12 Life, which we talk about in this interview, is available to watch on YouTube, and you can get the Chris Lilley collection on iTunes, which includes Angry Boys, Summer Heights High, and We Can Be Heroes.
Crooked Business. Don't Tell. At the age of 19, Scott Corfield set himself the task of producing his first feature by the time he hit 30. While in post production on his debut feature film, Crooked Business, Scott hit the 3-0, and fulfilled that. Now, having just turned 40, he’s completed his second feature, Don’t Tell, a court room drama starring Jack Thompson, Rachel Griffiths, and Gyton Grantley. Having had it’s initial cinema release earlier this year, Don’t Tell is now doing a festival circuit. To find out when it’s playing at a festival near you, check out the facebook page at facebook.com/donttellmovie.
Sandra Sciberras is the writer/director behind the great Australian films Caterpillar Wish and Surviving Georgia. Only months after graduating from the VCA, she received her first New Writer’s grant from The Australian Film Commission for a feature film which led to her debut feature, Deeper Than Blue, which premiered at the 50th Sydney International Film Festival. With several features in the pipeline both at home and abroad, Sandra also now lectures at the VCA, and 16th Street Actors Studio, and has taken on a mentoring role to aspiring filmmakers in both Malta & East Timor.
Upper Middle Bogan. Little Lunch. The Librarians. Robyn Butler and Wayne Hope are two of the most prolific creators in the film industry. From Stories From The Golf, The Librarians, Very Small Business, through to Upper Middle Bogan, and Little Lunch, the couple have created some truly iconic Australian television.