To commemorate ‘The Battle for Australia Day’, The History Channel will broadcast the world premiere of The Roar of the Kittyhawk.
Produced by historian, writer and filmmaker Will Davies, The Roar of the Kittyhawk takes an in-depth look at the brave Australian pilots that flew the Kittyhawks of the 75 and 76 squadron RAAF, successfully defending the shores of Kokoda in 1942.
The gripping one-hour documentary is told through the life of one of the pilots, squadron leader B.A. ‘Mick’ Grace. Grace was also the son and heir to the Grace Bros fortune, an international rugby player who played for the Wallabies in 1934 and a recipient of the prestigious Distinguished Flying Cross award.
In mid 1942, the situation in the Pacific was getting desperate for the Australians – Singapore had fallen and a whole Australian Division had gone into captivity. Britain was on its knees and little help could be expected from the Mother country. The Japanese had landed on the northern coast of New Guinea and were pushing south to Kokoda.
But it was here that the tide turned. The young Australian pilots in their Kittyhawks decimated the Japanese landing barges and their supply dumps and the ground troop fought off determined Japanese charges.
Featuring extensive interviews with WWII pilots, many who have since passed away since the making of the film, The Roar of the Kittyhawkpays homage to the efforts of the Kittyhawk heroes – and the crucial role they played in breaking the Japanese army.
The Battle for Australia Day was proclaimed a National Day by the Federal Government in 2008 and commemorates the service and sacrifice of all those who served in defence of Australia in 1942 and 1943, when Australia faced the gravest threats following the Fall of Singapore.
It airs on Wednesday, September 1 at 8.30pm AEST.