Nine’s new action drama for 2009 appears to have had a subtle title change from Rescue Squad to just Rescue now.
To be made by Southern Star Entertainment its producers are Sarah Smith (The Alice, McLeod’s Daughters) and Julie McGauran (Out of the Blue). Casting for the show was underway earlier this month, which will lead to actors undergoing an extensive “boot camp” training.
According to the funding approval by Screen Australia, the series will hinge around the characters of ‘Dean Gallagher’, 29, and ‘Chase’, 26, brothers. “Competitive alpha males, they argue over everything, agree on nothing, but defend each other from outsiders no matter what. They’re also members of the Special Operations Rescue Unit. Together they go about their everyday jobs of saving lives.”
Nine’s drama is expected to allow it to traverse a variety of crisis situations spanning everything from police, medical, hostage, trauma, terrorist, sieges and more.
Also under development betweek Nine and Southern Star Entertainment is a new kids series, Chatroom Chicks, following three young teenage girls – one German, one Singaporean and one Australian – who become friends while studying together at an international school in Singapore. The girls are united by their bright, lively personalities and by their common interests in contemporary dance – an activity in which they all excel.
Meanwhile the ABC and German Broadcaster ZDF are behind another kids series, Dance Academy. Its synopsis indicates, “When Tara Webster leaves her home in the country to be a student at the National Academy of Dance, she is sure all her dreams are about to come true. But does Tara have what it takes to make it in this high-pressured world when sometimes being an ordinary teenager can be difficult enough?”
SBS is also developing Law and Disorder, a three part series delving deep into the murky world of government misconduct, crime, corruption and the ordinary citizens who try to expose it all.
Other new, one-off documentaries to be produced include:
– Addicted to Money (ABC): Everything you need to know about what caused the financial meltdown, what lies ahead, and what we all need to do to survive in the New Economy.
– Loggerheads: The Lost Years (ABC / National Geographic): The films follows the life story an individual female Loggerhead Turtle from when her mother lays the clutch of eggs, to when, thirty years later, she struggles ashore to lay her first clutch of eggs in the beach sands from which she hatched.
– Penguin Island (ABC): The Little Penguins of Phillip Island, Australia, are ‘A list’ celebrities. Each year a half-a-million tourists come to watch their nightly parade – but it’s their private lives that are really interesting. With the help of a dedicated team of scientists we lift the lid on a world where relationships are fraught, affairs commonplace, and danger lurks around every corner.
– Salam Father (SBS): Salam Zuizudras’ father’s remains were recently found in a mass grave in Iraq 26 years after he mysteriously disappeared. Knowing nothing about his father – or what happened – Sam embarks on a mission from Australia to Iraq desperate for answers. What he discovers is a world of underground politics, spies, friendship, betrayal and a box of super 8 footage that uncovers a past undoubtedly responsible for shaping Salam – and his life – to this very day.
– Blank Canvas (Foxtel): The Sydney Dance Company has one year to secure its long term survival, to find a new leader and to create magic from a blank canvas. From the award winning team that brought the documentary 4 to the screen.
– Kill or Die (SBS): A humorous examination of a cross cultural mid-life crisis. Simon Palomares of Wogs out of Work fame, must go back to Spain to care for his ailing cantankerous father, juggle his family commitments back in Australia, whilst struggling to find out where he truly belongs. Is it Spain or Australia? To find out he enters the bloody gladiatorial arena of Spanish stand up comedy and, not unlike a bullfight, he must kill or die trying.
– A Pacific Solution (SBS): A group of Islanders from the tiny pacific nation of Kiribati affected by severe climate change are imported as guest workers to rural Australia.
– Shintaro (SBS): In 1964 a sensation swept through Australian lounge rooms leaving an indelible impression on the children of that generation. That sensation was The Samurai, the first foreign language cult television series from Japan to be seen in Australia.
Source: Screen Australia