Northern Territory Government Newsroom

Local Film Generates Millions Ahead of National Release

The Top End’s red carpet will come alive tonight with local and internationally acclaimed actors, for the Darwin premiere of a Territory production ahead of its national release.

High Ground, directed by Stephen Maxwell Johnson, is a gritty revenge thriller set against the landscape of 1930’s Arnhem Land. Renowned Australian actor, Simon Baker, stars alongside Jack Thompson, Aaron Pedersen and local newcomer, Jacob Junior Nayinggul.

Shot across stone and floodplain country around the East Alligator River, Cannon Hill, Arnhem Land and Kakadu National Park, High Ground showcases some of the Territory’s most iconic locations.

The project also created new jobs and opportunities for Territorians, and many Traditional Owners of the land on which High Ground was filmed are Executive Producers on the film.

The Territory Labor Government invested $400,000 dollars into the film through its screen agency, Screen Territory, as part of its record $9 million commitment over four years into the industry.

High Ground attracted $2.1 million of external investment, and injected $2.5 million into the Territory during production.

The film had its world premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival last year, and it was named one of the Best Australian Films of 2020 by screen industry trade publication, Screen Hub.

The Australian theatrical release of High Ground is scheduled for 28 January, an event which will see the film showcased on over 200 screens nationally.

High Ground will be on show at 'Flix in the Wet', a program of films presented by Darwin Film Society and Darwin Entertainment Centre until 21 March. 


Quotes attributable to Chief Minister, Michael Gunner:

“Investing in our screen industry means investing in local jobs.

“Production created new opportunities for Territorians, as well as generating local spending along the way.

“This incredible film has attracted private investment, and put the iconic West Arnhem Land outback on show to the rest of Australia and the world.

“The line-up of local talent who starred in and worked on this film have proven the Territory has the ability to turn large scale productions into the real deal.” 


Quotes attributable to High Ground Producing Team:

High Ground has been an incredible adventure and a true collaboration. We can’t wait for all Australians to share in this cinematic experience.”