February 16th, 2015       Posted by Frederik       Display Comments

Toni Collette has received a nomination for the Australian Astra Award in the category of Most Outstanding Performance by an Actor Female for “Devil’s Playground”. She shares the category with Celia Ireland, Nicole da Silva , Pamela Rabe and Danielle Cormack – all for Wentworth’s second season. “Devil’s Playground” received a total of four nominations (Collette, Andrew McFarlane, Don Hany and Simon Burke). Winners will be announced on the evening of Thursday March 12, at the largest-ever ASTRA Awards in the 20-year history of Australian subscription television. The awards will be staged at The Star in Pyrmont.

  September 8th, 2014       Posted by Frederik       Display Comments

Foxtel’s miniseries “Devil’s Playground” premieres tonight in Australia. In 1975, Fred Schepisi wrote and directed a movie called The Devil’s Playground, about his own teenage years when he moved away from a strict Catholic upbringing. It won the AFI award for Best Film in 1976 and Simon Burke won the award for Best Actor. The 2014 “sequel” puts the subject of abuse by the clergy front and centre. Burke revisits the role of Tom Allen, which he first played as a 13 year old. Now as an adult Tom is a psychiatrist and secular confessor to the Catholic clergy.

Among the impressive cast is Toni Collette, who created a unique individual out of her character – a crusading member of parliament who takes on the Catholic Church. “Her character just appeared to us fairly late in the day, and we were just overjoyed when Toni said yes,” he says. “She makes this character with a completely different energy to a lot of the others. She lifts it and brings this deft, light touch – especially the scenes with Don Hany. She’s a member of parliament and he’s a bishop. You watch and go, ‘My god, it’s like Clark Gable and Katharine Hepburn’.” So it’s a comic part? “No,” Burke says, “but in a show that doesn’t have a hell of a lot of laughs, they have a spark between them which is unexpected and they clash a lot, and it’s very enjoyable to watch because they are such great actors.” But here is the question that will be asked by any viewer who was watching NSW parliament in the late ’80s and early ’90s: Is Collette playing Deirdre Grusovin or Franca Arena, both of whom campaigned for an inquiry into child abuse? Burke: “No-one’s playing anyone in particular, but she’s playing the progressive member for Sydney, though it’s before Clover Moore’s time. She’s playing a member of parliament who reaches a moral flashpoint, I guess, and decides to make a stand. Deirdre Grusovin is one of several people that have done such things in their lives, and I guess Franca Arena to a certain extent.

The reviews for “Devil’s Playground” have been very favorable. Here’s an excerpt from the New Daily’s September 7 review, which makes you all the more buzzing for tonight’s premiere: Devil’s Playground is the best show we have given the world for many years. The cast is extraordinary. Hany and Burke are joined by the likes of Toni Collette, Jack Thompson, John Noble and Max Cullen. The writing is exemplary. The production quality world class. This is a show that Australia should love, embrace and be proud of. It is important. It is high quality. It is utterly engaging. In short, Devil’s Playground is just fantastic, on every level.

  July 11th, 2014       Posted by Frederik       Display Comments

Foxtel has released a first teaser trailer for the upcoming miniseries “Devil’s Playground”. It looks really exciting and not to be missed. I was surprised that Toni’s character was featured a lot. Back when it was shot, word had it that her scenes were shot on just one day. So hopefully there’s still enough to bee seen throughout the series. “Devil’s Playground”, which is directed by Rachel Ward, premieres this September in Australia. Edit: Two pictures from the miniseries have been added as well.

  June 8th, 2013       Posted by Frederik       Display Comments

Another new project for Toni! According to the Daily Telegraph, Collette stood out in a cast of men on the set of the new TV series Devil’s Playground in Darlinghurst, dressed conservatively in a blue woollen dress with felt hat – a costume meant to reflect 1980s Australia and not the 1940s as it appeared to observers. The actress has only a small role in new six episode Matchbox Pictures/Screen Australia mini-series which is being directed by Rachel Ward and Tony Krawitz.

Collette wrapped her small role on Wednesday ahead of an appearance on the red carpet last night for the premiere of The Way, Way Back. Also starring in Devil’s Playground, the sequel to Fred Schepisi’s original film The Devil’s Playground, is Jack Thompson who looked the part in clerical robes suggesting he will play either a Catholic cardinal or bishop in the production, to be broadcast on Foxtel. Actors Simon Burke and Christopher Stollery joined Collette and Thompson on Sydney set this week.