This excerpt from a Richard Rushfield post @ Gawker about the top-grossing movies of the decade gave me a laugh. I wonder if the local press will begin to hype this story?
Australians are dangerously over-represented in our culture. Yes, we know that technically Australia is a continent, but nonetheless it’s a relatively not-that-big island in the middle of nowhere, with a bunch of little other stuff around it. (Yes, for the purposes of scientific measurement we are counting New Zealanders as Australians. “Oceanics” is too scientific sounding; “Down Underers” too wordy).
Now understand us, we bow to no one in our sadness at the news of the death of Breaker Morant; the first two Mad Max films are gospel. If anyone has rented Babe or Heavenly Creatures or The Man From Snowy River, give us a holler, we’ll be right over.
But does every film have to be made by Australians? Are Michael Bay and Gore Verbinski really the only American directors left?
A third of the top ten is directed by Down Underers (the LOTR and Shrek films) and another one (The Dark Knight) stars one. If you include Geoffrey Rush as the real reason for the Pirate films success (a case we’d be happy to make after a few drinks), then you could say every non-Harry Potter film on the top ten is Australian.
Now this is all well and good, but has anyone thought about what happens if Australia were suddenly to withdraw all its actors and directors from American cinema? Entertainment, our biggest export, would be crippled, and our economy would grind to a halt overnight. Yes, the Australian people have been good friends to us over the years, but is it responsible to leave our economy and national security open to blackmail as the short-sighted leaders of show business have done.
BTW, I just discovered via IMDB that Babe was filmed entirely in New South Wales. One more reason to love that movie (though I loved the book first!).