The Slap to ricochet on small screen

slapMatchbox Pictures has picked up the rights for a television adaptation of Christos Tsiolkas’ novel, The Slap.

Matchbox consists of Tony Ayres, Michael McMahon, Penny Chapman, Helen Panckhurst and Helen Bowden.

The story by Tolkias (Head On), takes place at a suburban barbeque, when a man slaps a child who is not his own. This event, told from the point of view of 8 people, ricochets through a group of family and friends, dividing and changing them. It recently won the 2009 Commonwealth Writer’s Prize and is shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award.

Tony Ayres (Saved, Home Song Stories, Walking on Water) said, “The brilliance of The Slap is that it brings to vivid life an Australia which we absolutely know, and yet we have never seen before. Through focusing upon the shattering repercussions of a single event, the novel unfurls into a coruscating discourse on race, class, gender, sexuality and identity in contemporary Australian. Matchbox Pictures is convinced that The Slap will make landmark television.”

Christos Tsiolkas said, “I am very excited to be working with Matchbox. From personal experience, I trust their vision and their integrity as creators of film and television and believe they will create something exhilarating, passionate and provocative with the material in the novel.”

Executive Producer is Penny Chapman (RAN, Brides of Christ), who is currently producing the ABC’s children’s series My Place. Michael McMahaon (The Home Song Stories, Saved) and Helen Bowden (Soft Fruit, Girl in a Mirror) will produce.

So far no broadcaster is yet announced for the series, which is expected to see Ayres feature as one of the directors.

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