BEACONSFIELD video shop owner James McKibbon is raising money to help two Sydney filmmakers plundered by freeloading film pirates.
Brothers Kiah and Tristan Roache-Turner were left tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket when their comedy-horror zombie flick Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead was massively pirated soon after its US release in February.
The low-budget film—made for just $150,000—has over the past fortnight been the second-most pirated movie in the world, according to thepiratebay.to.
At one stage, it was being illegally downloaded more than Sam Taylor-Johnson’s Fifty Shades of Grey.
Mr McKibbon will donate every dollar Starland Video takes from renting the movie over the next month to the Roache-Turner brothers. He is also selling themed T-shirts ($25 each) to help the pair break even. Shop staff will dress as zombies and pirates to launch the campaign from April 3-5.
He hopes to raise about $1500 for the talented pair. Kiah Roache-Turner, who directed the film, hopes more people like McKibbon will come out of the woodwork to support Australian films.
Local film buff Matt Eeles, production manager at the Herald and founder of review website http://www.cinemaaustralia.com.au says the film industry needs to pick up the pace.
“People are hearing about films on torrent sites because no-one seems to be setting aside money for advertising,” he says. “The film industry is in a bad position and it’s sad to see Australian films become charity cases.”
Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead is released on DVD April 2.
by EMMIE DOWLING