U.S/AUSTRALIAN COMEDY CO-PRODUCTION WIZARDS! TO FILM IN TROPICAL QUEENSLAND
Published Thursday, 19 May, 2022 at 09:00 AM
Premier and Minister for the Olympics
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
Feature-length U.S/Australian comedy Wizards!, starring renowned US comedian Pete Davidson, will film in tropical Queensland, secured into the state by the Queensland Government through Screen Queensland’s Production Attraction Strategy
The feature is produced by Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner of Brad Pitt’s company Plan B Entertainment (12 Years a Slave, World War Z, Moonlight), Liz Watts of Sydney-based See-Saw Films (Foe, The Power of the Dog, Lion, The King’s Speech) and A24 who will also handle global distribution.
The screenplay, written by David Michôd (Animal Kingdom, The King) and based on a story by Michôd and Joel Edgerton (The Gift, Boy Erased, The King), follows the comical exploits of two hapless beach-bar operators (Pete Davidson and Franz Rogowski) who run into trouble when they stumble across stolen loot.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the production will create job opportunities for locals as well as generate significant economic benefits for the state.
“What a coup for Queensland,” said the Premier.
“Once again, our local film industry and picture-perfect locations have lured another valuable production with big budgets to spend in our regions.
“Wizards! will inject approximately $14.7 million into our state economy and create around 100 jobs for Queensland cast and crew, as well as nearly 300 opportunities for extras — which I’m sure will be great news for local industry practitioners and the community alike.
“This announcement arrives ahead of next month’s global releases; Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis and Netflix’s Spiderhead starring Chris Hemsworth, which both filmed in Queensland on the Gold Coast.”
Screen Queensland CEO Kylie Munnich said securing Wizards! demonstrates that producers from around the world know that filming in Queensland brings many benefits.
“Queensland is a globally renowned screen production hub. Screen Queensland is continuously pitching our state’s locations, studios, skilled screen workforce and valuable incentives,” said Munnich.
“Screen Queensland is delighted to welcome Plan B Entertainment to Queensland for the first time, and we are glad to see the return of See-Saw Films since they filmed their 2020 Foxtel/Sky series The End on the Gold Coast.”
Co-producer Liz Watts said Queensland, Australia is an ideal fit for the upcoming film. “We are thrilled to be bringing David Michôd’s next feature to Queensland with its wealth of talent in its cast and crews, and enviable locations”, said Watts.
Alongside Queensland Government support to secure the project on a state level, the film was additionally attracted into Australia through the Federal Government Location Incentive.
Zoe Russell (Premier's office) - 0439 982 347
Marketing and Communications Coordinator
07 3248 0524
ABOUT SCREEN QUEENSLAND
Screen Queensland is the Queensland Government-owned screen agency, investing in development and production, talent development programs and screen culture events to grow a successful local screen industry. The agency supports locally produced films, series and games, and secures international and interstate production and post-production into the state. It also operates Screen Queensland Studios: Brisbane, which most recently hosted Tiger King-inspired series JOE vs CAROLE, and the first season of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s autobiographical comedy series Young Rock. Screen Queensland Studios: Cairns is set for completion in 2023. Upcoming international releases supported by Screen Queensland include Thirteen Lives directed by Ron Howard, Ticket to Paradise starring Julia Roberts and George Clooney, Spiderhead starring Chris Hemsworth, Baz Luhrmann’s highly anticipated biopic Elvis and Disney+ sci-fi series Nautilus. Supported Australian projects include Bluey, Australian Survivor, Upright (Season 2) Strait to the Plate, Troppo and BAFTA-winning game Unpacking. Screen Queensland is deeply committed to uplifting the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and increasing diversity on and off screen. For more information on funding programs, incentives, locations and facilities, visit screenqueensland.com.au
ABOUT PLAN B ENTERTAINMENT
Dede Gardner (Producer) is an Academy Award-winning producer and co-president of Brad Pitt’s production company, Plan B. Throughout her career she has produced many Academy Award- and Golden Globe-nominated and winning films, including Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk and Moonlight, Adam McKay’s The Big Short and Vice, Ava DuVernay’s Selma, Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave and Terrence Malick’s Palme d’Or winner The Tree of Life.
Dede's recent features include Lee Isaac Chung’s Minari and Miranda July’s Kajillionaire, as well as the forthcoming features Blonde, She Said, Women Talking and Landscape With Invisible Hand. Her recent television releases include the Amazon Original series Outer Range starring Josh Brolin in his television debut, the HBO/Sky limited series “The Third Day,” created by Dennis Kelly, and the Amazon limited series “The Underground Railroad,” created by Barry Jenkins. Up next on the TV side is the forthcoming Amazon series “Paper Girls”.
Jeremy Kleiner (Producer) is an Academy-Award winning producer and co-president of Brad Pitt’s film and television production company PLAN B. His producing track record includes a number of critically and commercially celebrated films including Adam McKay’s The Big Short andVice, Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight and If Beale Street Could Talk, Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave, Bong Joon-Ho’s Okja, James Gray’s The Lost City of Z and Ad Astra, and David Michod’s War Machine and The King. Along with his partners Dede Gardner and Pitt, he was honored with the PGA’s David O. Selznick Achievement Award in 2020 for outstanding body of work in motion pictures and the PGA Visionary Award in 2015 for dedication to inspirational storytelling.
Kleiner’s recent features include Lee Isaac Chung’s Minari and Miranda July’s Kajillionaire, as well as the forthcoming features Blonde, She Said, Women Talking and Landscape With Invisible Hand. His recent television releases include the Amazon Original series Outer Range starring Josh Brolin in his television debut, the HBO/Sky limited series “The Third Day,” created by Dennis Kelly, and the Amazon limited series “The Underground Railroad,” created by Barry Jenkins. Up next on the TV side is the forthcoming Amazon series “Paper Girls”.
ABOUT SEE-SAW FILMS
See-Saw Films is an Academy Award®, Emmy and BAFTA-winning film and television production house, founded in 2008 by Iain Canning and Emile Sherman. The innovative production company is made up of an industry-leading team across offices in London and Sydney.
See-Saw’s ‘The Power Of The Dog’ written and directed by Jane Campion, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons, won the Best Director Academy Award® and was nominated for a further 11 awards; and won Best Director and Best Film BAFTAs, and was nominated for a further 6 awards. See-Saw produced the six-time Academy Award® nominated and two-time BAFTA winning ‘Lion’, starring Dev Patel and Nicole Kidman, and in 2011 won the Academy Award® for Best Motion Picture for ‘The King’s Speech’ which swept up an additional three awards from twelve nominations, as well as picking up seven BAFTAs from fourteen nominations. Recent films include ‘Operation Mincemeat’ directed by John Madden, starring Colin Firth, Matthew Macfadyen and Kelly Macdonald and upcoming films include ‘The Stranger’, written and directed by Thomas M. Wright, starring Joel Edgerton and Sean Harris; ‘The Son’, directed by Florian Zeller and written by Florian Zeller and Christopher Hampton, starring Hugh Jackman, Laura Dern, Vanessa Kirby and Anthony Hopkins; and ‘Foe’ written by Iain Reid and Garth Davis, directed by Garth Davis and starring Saoirse Ronan, Paul Mescal and Aaron Pierre.
A24 is the global entertainment company behind the Emmy-winning series Euphoria starring Zendaya, Golden Globe winning series Ramy, and such award winning films as Minari, Moonlight, Lady Bird, Midsommar, Amy, Uncut Gems and The Tragedy of Macbeth. Upcoming television projects include The Sympathizer, a limited series from Park Chan-Wook starring Robert Downey Jr., Underrated a doc series with Steph Curry, and Beef starring Academy-Award nominee Steven Yeun and Ali Wong. Current films include Everything Everywhere All At Once starring Michelle Yeoh and upcoming film releases include Alex Garland’s Men, Ari Aster’s Disappointment Blvd. starring Joaquin Phoenix, and Celine Song’s directorial debut Past Lives.