Dystopian Western THE ROVER Takes Shape As Casting Call Reveals More
If you're not Baz Luhrmann or George Miller you can pretty much get away with making a movie out in the Australian boondocks without too much unwanted attention from paparazzi or fans. (Although random pot smokers are hard to pin down, as the Snowtown crew discovered.)
Of course, as director David Michôd and his production team are finding out, all this changes once you cast Twilight hunk Robert Pattinson in one of your main roles.
So it is for The Rover, Michôd's hotly anticipated follow up to Animal Kingdom, of which little is known besides it being a gritty western set in the Australian outback in a dystopian near future. Guy Pearce stars as a man in relentless pursuit of a gang of thieves who stole his beloved car, with Pattinson in a key supporting role as the brother of one of the thieves.
Casting Pattinson means that every morsel of information about The Rover is found and scrutinized. There's even a fan page tracking the film's every move. Thanks to this rabid scrutiny, some casting call information has been unearthed which brings this future Michôd is building into a sharper focus. It's worth reporting as so little is known about the film at this stage.
It seems that between now and this near future where The Rover takes place, the population of Australia and its culture becomes heavily dominated by Asian culture - no surprise really given the increasing dominance of China in the region - with the producers looking to cast Cambodians, Mandarin-speaking Chinese and (of all things) Asian acrobats among its cast of extras, as well as Aboriginal peoples of all ages.
Ostensibly this might seem like non-news (or only a sly nod to Australia's own wild west during the 1850s gold rush, when large numbers of Chinese migrated out to work the gold fields) were it not for the fact that The Rover takes place in the spartan wilds of the Australian outback, where people aren't exactly a commodity. Thus such a heavy weighting towards such specific ethnicities must really have a strong bearing as to the overall make up of the cast and its characters.
Suddenly Michôd's future world has a whole lot of texture. The Rover will start shooting in South Australia in January 2013.
Thanks to the interwebs for the amazing photo above.