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Stephen Lang, Vinnie Jones Join ‘34th Battalion’

By | Thursday January 3, 2013 @ 10:49pm PST

Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney.

EXCLUSIVE: Vinnie Jones and Stephen Lang have joined the ensemble cast of The 34th Battalion, the $20 million saga of an Australian Army unit that fought heroic battles against the Germans during World War I. Jones will play the British-born Lieutenant-Colonel who led the battalion, with Lang as a U.S. officer. The cast includes Luke Hemsworth, Emilie de Ravin, Charles Mesure, Les Hill, Claire van der Boom, Tony Bonner, Andrew Lees and Vince Colosimo. The screenplay by Ian Sparke, who’s also the executive producer, and his son Luke Sparke, focuses on four men from rural New South Wales who joined the Army in 1916 after the disastrous Gallipoli campaign. Luke Sparke will make his directing debut and shooting is due to start midyear in Wauchope, NSW. Camelot Distribution Group is selling international rights.

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Emilie De Ravin Set For Aussie War Drama ‘The 34th Battalion’

By | Tuesday November 20, 2012 @ 5:16pm PST

Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney.

EXCLUSIVE: The Australian-born, U.S.-based star of Lost and Once Upon A Time has joined the cast of The 34th Battalion, the saga of an Australian Army unit that fought heroic battles with the Germans during World War I. Emilie De Ravin will play the wife of Nick Farnell’s character, one of four men from Maitland in rural New South Wales who joined the Army in 1916 after the disastrous Gallipoli campaign. The ensemble cast includes Luke Hemsworth, Charles Mesure, Les Hill, Claire van der Boom, Henry Nixon, Andrew Lees and Vince Colosimo. The executive producer is Ian Sparke, who has worked as military adviser, costume designer, researcher and webbing master on numerous film and TV productions; among his credits are the HBO miniseries The Pacific, Foxtel’s docudrama Charles Bean’s Great War and the films Iron Sky, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Beneath Hill 60, Kokoda and The Great Raid. Sparke wrote the screenplay with his son Luke Sparke, who will make his directing debut, and shooting is due to start in early 2013. Camelot is selling international rights. De Ravin is repped by Gersh and manager Darren Goldberg.

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Luke Hemsworth, Charles Mesure Set For Australian WW1 Drama ‘The 34th Battalion’

By | Tuesday November 13, 2012 @ 7:59pm PST

Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney.

The Australian Army’s 34th Battalion fought fierce battles against the Germans in France during World War I. Now the unit’s little-heralded story will be chronicled in The 34th Battalion, a $A19M ($19.8M) Australian film with Luke Hemsworth, Charles Mesure and Les Hill. They join Nick Farnell, Clare van der Boom, Henry Nixon, Andrew Lees, Vince Colosimo, Ashley Zuckerman, Tony Bonner and Khan Chittenden in the ensemble cast. The 34th Battalion tells the story of four friends in Maitland in rural New South Wales who joined the Army in 1916 after the disastrous Gallipoli campaign. In their first engagement the battalion saved the French town of Villers-Bretonneux. Later the 34th played a role in the Allies’ offensive in the battle of Amiens and the battle of St Quentin Canal, the operation that breached the Hindenburg Line, thus sealing Germany’s defeat. Ian Sparke will serve as executive producer and his son Luke Sparke will direct. The father-son team also penned the screenplay. Shooting is due to start in early 2013.

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