Foxtel commissions new drama High Country

New drama from the Wentworth team starring Leah Purcell, Aaron Pedersen, Sara Wiseman to film in the VIctorian Alps.

Brian Walsh’s final project commissioned for the Foxtel group has been announced: High Country, a mystery thriller to be filmed in the Victorian Alps.

The 8 part series, which comes from the team behind Wentworth, stars Leah Purcell (The Drover’s Wife The Legend of Molly Johnson, Wentworth), Aaron Pedersen (Mystery Road, Jack Irish), Sara Wiseman (Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, A Place to Call Home) and Ian McElhinney (Game of Thrones, Derry Girls).

When detective Andrea (Andie) Whitford (Leah Purcell) is transferred to the Victorian High Country, she is thrust into a baffling mystery of five missing persons who have vanished into the wilderness. Through an edge-of-the-seat, high-stakes investigation, Andie uncovers a complex web involving murder, deceit and revenge.

Foxtel Group Chief Content and Commercial Officer, Amanda Laing, said: “High Country is an original Australian story inspired by the cultures, identities and landscapes of the Victorian Alps – a setting rarely seen on screen.”

“Foxtel Group remains committed to investing in high-quality Australian content and are thrilled to partner with Screen Australia, VicScreen and Curio Pictures on High Country so viewers in Australia and around the world can enjoy this authentically Australian story – filled with twists and turns, mystery and an undeniable sense of place.”

Screen Australia CEO Graeme Mason, said: “We are proud to support this exceptionally strong creative team to bring to life a fast-paced thriller with complex, real characters and a well-crafted script that will keep viewers hooked. Set against the vast, majestic landscape of the Victorian Alps and weaving in First Nations cultural stories, High Country is sure to be a landmark television series.”

Victoria’s Minister for Creative Industries Steve Dimopoulos, said: “High Country is another coup for Victoria’s booming screen industry. The production will create jobs for 250 Victorians and inject close to $15 million into our economy, all while telling a story set against the beauty of our alpine region. We are thrilled to welcome this production to Victoria and can’t wait for the series to hit our screens.”

Leah Purcell, said: “The opportunity to act and work alongside the talented creative team and my amazing co-stars is incredible. I can’t wait to go to work in the Victorian Alps delving into scripts with adventurous and thrilling storylines. I look forward to bringing this first-class new series to local and international audiences where Country and Australian-ness are central to the story.”

Curio Pictures Managing Director, Jo Porter, said: “High Country got under our skin from the moment creators Marcia Gardner and John Ridley first described their ambition to create a unique series that redefined and played with the mystery thriller genre. They have delivered a compelling mix of edge-of-the-seat storytelling set in a beguiling landscape, together with an engrossing journey for the central character created with, and for, the indomitable Leah Purcell.

“Creative Director Rachel Gardner and I are delighted to be working again with Penny Win and the Foxtel Group, Producers Pino Amenta and Sue Edwards and the whole talented cast and crew. We can’t wait to get started.”

High Country will begin production in Victoria this month and will air on Foxtel and Binge.

Production credit: High Country Is a Curio Pictures production for the Foxtel Group, commissioned by Brian Walsh. Major production investment from Screen Australia and Foxtel Group in association with VicScreen. Created by Marcia Gardner and John Ridley, the eight-part series will be produced by Curio Pictures, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Pictures Television (SPT), worldwide distributor for the series, in association with Rage Media. Jo Porter and Rachel Gardner from Curio Pictures are Executive Producers with Pino Amenta and Sue Edwards as Producers along with Executive Producers Marcia Gardner and John Ridley who are also the key writers of the series. Executive Producer for the Foxtel Group is Penny Win.

10 Responses

  1. PS….being a “true blue Aussie” nothing rattles me more than when all things Australian are compared to America,… it gives me the vapours. 😡

  2. Was watching Yellowstone last night and thought how would a show like this go being made in Australia. But I don’t think Aussies are into cattlemen and cattle. Maybe 40 years ago but not now. Anyway if they go ahead with it, please shoot all the exteriors on location. No putting talent into a studio and led wall it. If you’re going to say you’re in the high country be there.

    1. I’ve never understood why people compare Australian Drama with American drama. Yellowstone is a “neo western drama” it is nothing like Australian cattlemen or cattle stations or mystery/thrillers. In Australia we don’t have westerns because we are unique which includes the land, people, horses (often Wallers) and the scenery, have you seen Mystery Road Series 1 set on an outback cattle station in 2018, Muster Dogs, Outback Ringer, Landline or the Drovers’s Wife The Legend to name a few all of which were shown recently on TV.
      But most importantly it also shows the respect Foxtel had for Brian Walsh and his vision for unique Australian TV shows and that is what makes a person’s love of their country priceless.

      1. “ we are unique” doesn’t Yellowstone have horses, people, the land, scenery. ??? The mountainous backdrops in Yellowstone are spectacular. As will be the snowy mountains if they shoot there.

        1. Just to be clear….yes we do have land, people etc etc as I mentioned, and the reason I mentioned “unique” is because my grandparents owned a cattle station (not a Ranch) in central NSW and my father was a Jackaroo (not a Cowboy). He rode Stockhorses and Walkers still breed for their sturdiness and were used in WW1 (not a Quater Horses), he often stayed in Ringers Quarters (not a Bunkhouse) he wore an Akubra and Drizabone (not a Stetson or a Kevin Costner Yellowstone jacket.) Yellowstone National Park is in Wyoming but 70+% of the show is filmed in Utah and Montana mostly on on soundstages. Having in toured America I can honestly say nothing beats Australia including the Snowy Mountains. And that is why this country is unique in its own right.

          1. Correct…The Great Dividing Range……both are part of the alpine region geographically. The only other alpine region in Australia is the Tasmanian Highland.

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