October 10, 2023

Baz Luhrmann’s Faraway Downs Premiering At The First Ever SXSW Sydney

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Image: Baz Luhrmann | Photo credit by Hugh Stewart



SXSW Sydney is excited to announce that Baz Luhrmann, will be personally premiering his inspiring, re-imagined extended version of his 2008 epic ‘Australia’ starring Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman, Bryan Brown and Brandon Walters on the closing night of the first ever SXSW Sydney Screen Festival (Oct 21, 2023). 


Building on the original, Luhrmann is retelling the story of English aristocrat Lady Sarah Ashley’s (Kidman) relocation down under over six chapters, launching officially on Disney+ on November 26, 2023. 


Inspired by a shift to episodic storytelling, Luhrmann explains: “With over 2 million feet of film from the original piece, my team and I were able to revisit anew the central themes of the work. I am honoured to world premiere “Faraway Downs” in Australia, the place that has inspired me and my work my entire life” 


The story centres around Lady Sarah Ashley (Kidman), who travels halfway across the world to confront her husband and arrange the sale of a million-acre cattle farm, Faraway Downs. After his untimely death, she’s left to fend off a ruthless cattle baron, King Carney (Bryan Brown). 


Reluctantly joining forces with rough-hewn drover (Hugh Jackman) to protect her ranch, this sweeping adventure-romance is explored through the eyes of young Nullah (Brandon Walters), an Indigenous Australian child caught up in the government’s Draconian racial policy now referred to as the Stolen Generations. Tackling love, time and the looming impact of WWII, Luhrmann paints a rich picture of life in Far-North Queensland. 


Colin Daniels, SXSW Sydney Managing Director, said, “We are so happy to be sharing the creative work of Baz Luhrmann and the entire “Faraway Downs” team at Australia’s first ever SXSW Sydney.”


There’s still time to secure your place to the inaugural SXSW Sydney Screen Festival and catch the world premiere presented by Baz Luhrmann. Head here to get your badge or Screen wristband today.


About SXSW Sydney Screen Festival 


The SXSW Sydney 2023 Screen Festival brings together creatives across a wide range of specialties from around the world, with a particular focus on the incredible talent within the Asia-Pacific region. With a program that includes feature films, shorts, TV premieres, music videos, and XR, we wholeheartedly embrace the democratisation of screen storytelling. Join us in this celebration of the moving image and its future. The SXSW Sydney 2023 Screen Festival takes place from Oct. 15-21. 




It's not too late to secure your access to SXSW Sydney! Whether you choose a Badge, Wristband or Expo Pass you’re in for some cutting-edge entertainment from across the globe.


Accessing SXSW Sydney 2023 – Badges and Wristbands

Badges are your master key for SXSW Sydney – they open the doors to all activity across the week-long event, from its Conference and Tech & Innovation Expo to its Music, Screen and Games Festivals. Hearing from the hitmakers mentioned in this article is only possible with a badge.


Wristbands give access to SXSW Sydney’s Music, Screen or Games festivals, for performances, screenings and showcases.

  • Music Festival: 300 performances in 25 venues over 4 nights.
  • Screen Festival: unlimited screenings over one week.
  • Games Festival: 150 new indie games and parties over 6 nights.


Head here to find the level of access that’s right for you.


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