Benno Thiel Invites You to Take a Visit to the Dead Centre

Dead Centre is a three part comedy drama web series set in the South Australian outback. The series was filmed in early 2020 across three major locations, Tailem Bend, Gumeracha and Hendon. Dead Centre was backed by funding bodies Mercury CX and Helpmann Academy. An extremely talented cast and crew of local South Australians helped bring the project to life. Since it’s completion Dead Centre has been accepted into multiple national and international film festivals and went on to win the Best Australian Web Series at the Gold Coast Film Festival, hosted at Warner Brothers Movie World.

Released on YouTube in time for AUSgust: the Australian Film Month, Dead Centre is set for your Aussie comedy consumption.

Dead Centre follows Mel as she searches for her estranged brother, leading her to a mysterious rural town where she soon finds herself caught up in a series of strange events, each testing the lengths she will go to find her brother. When Mel’s parents begin to worry about her missing sibling, Mel reluctantly makes the decision to find him. It’s been two years since she last saw him. Two years since he cut ties and moved to the small town of Dead Centre in rural Australia. As Mel searches the town for Paul, a series of roadblocks test her mental and physical strength. As Mel begins to unravel the towns secrets, it soon becomes clear that finding her brother won’t be as easy as she first thought.

Director Benno Thiel had this to say about the series:

At its core, Dead Centre is a story about family, that no matter the distance we are always intrinsically connected and drawn together.

As a storyteller I can’t help but get excited by the prospect of creating a unique world with memorable characters. Dead Centre is a dark comedy thriller, juxtaposing the neon lights of Tokyo against the harsh, dilapidated aesthetic of an old, outback town. I’ve always wanted to challenge the outback stereotype, pairing it with a futuristic cult that is at odds against the environment. Tonally, the series is influenced by top cyberpunk thrillers such as Blade Runner and Ghost in the Shell. Stylistically the series utilises visual comedy and fast paced editing, drawing inspiration from Edgar Wright’s ‘Hot Fuzz’ and Matthew Vaughn’s ‘Kick-Ass’.

Dead Centre contrasts the comedic moments with the drama, allowing a careful balance of laugh out loud moments that sit comfortably alongside Mel’s sometimes emotional discoveries. The audience will watch for the comedy but come back for the characters.

As a director I am excited to create the Dead Centre, to explore the themes of family through our characters and craft an aesthetic entirely unique to this world. It’s neon punk in outback Australia – and I can’t wait to share it with audiences!

Check out the trailer and Episode 1 of Dead Centre below…

Andrew F Peirce

Andrew is passionate about Australian cinema, Australian politics, Australian culture, and Australia in general. Found regularly talking online about Sweet Country, and reminding people to watch Young Adult.

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