First glimpse of The Water Diviner book.

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Meaghan and I have just signed off on the novel cover for The Water Diviner, along with Pan Macmillan and eOne. The team at Pan Macmillan has been a dream to work with from the outset. Bolinda Publishing is about to record the audiobook with a secret narrator.

The Water Diviner cover art

The Water Diviner cover art

The back blurb reads:

“Constantinople, 1919. Joshua Connor, an Australian farmer, arrives in Turkey to fulfill a pledge made on his wife’s grave – to find the bodies of their three sons, lost in battle at Gallipoli, and bring them home.

In the enemy city Connor meets Orhan, a mischievous Turkish boy, and his mother Ayshe, who is struggling to keep her family hotel afloat and rebuild her life after the war.

Connor can trace life-giving water under the earth, but finding his sons at Gallipoli seems impossible when faced with the gruesome landscape of sun-bleached bones and rotting uniforms. But a Turkish officer gives the broken father hope where there was none – Connor’s eldest son may still be alive.

As Connor risks his life travelling into the heart of Anatolia one question haunts him: If his son is alive why hasn’t he come home?”

Look out for The Water Diviner book in all your favourite bookstores, online and as a audiobook from December 9.

The Water Diviner Melbourne previews

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An update for AACTA and AFI members in and around Melbourne… if you check your email inbox, you should find your invitation to book a ticket to attend one of four preview screenings in Melbourne. The first is open to AACTA and AFI members and will be held next Monday 27 October at 6pm at the Palace Cinema, Como. The other three are only open to AACTA members, and are additional screenings hosted by Entertainment One. Those sessions are at the Kino Cinemas in Collins Street on Tuesday 28 (9.30am) and Thursday 30 (5.30pm) October, and Wednesday 5 November (6.00pm). If you’re lucky enough to snag a ticket, I hope you enjoy the ride. It’s wonderful to have the film showing in our home town.

The Water Diviner preview screenings

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AACTA (Australia Academy of Cinema and Television Arts) members can be amongst the first to see The Water Diviner at preview screenings in Sydney and Melbourne on Monday 27th of  October (yep, next week). These screenings are part of the formal voting process for the 2015 AACTA Awards, so the sessions are not available to the general public unfortunately.

If you are a NSW AACTA member and have not received an email from AACTA with booking details, contact them asap as the tickets are extremely limited.

There are also other advance screening sessions available for AACTA members prior to start of the awards voting period in early November, as the film is having its theatrical release on Boxing Day.

Victorian booking emails have not been sent out yet but I’m told members can expect them any day.

For those lucky enough to have tickets, I hope you enjoy the film.

The Water Diviner Novel Launch

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I’m excited to announce that The Water Diviner novel will be released in Australia on December 9.

Published by PanMacmillan, Australia, the novel is written by Meaghan Wilson-Anastasios and myself and is based on the original movie script by Andrew Knight and myself (Andrew Anastasios). The novel will also be available as an audiobook, published by our long-term friends at Bolinda.

Meaghan and Andrew in Istanbul

Meaghan and Andrew in Istanbul

In case the abnormally long, hyphenated name wasn’t a dead giveaway my wife Meaghan and I wrote the book together. Meaghan did initial research for the script and a number of other Gallipoli projects, and was an early reader who gave us helpful feedback and thoughts on the screenplay as it evolved. So she knows the script inside out, and is a hopeless Turkophile.  For anyone planning a trip there she has filed a great story on James Bond in Istanbul for Gourmet Traveller which you can read here, and another on Ottoman cuisine.

Andrew Knight and I like to think of the original script as our love letter to Turkey. With the film ( see the trailer here) Russell Crowe brings the story to life, while the book builds on that story in ways only the written word can.

The Water Diviner paperback and audiobook will be available from all your favourite bookstores and major booksellers from December 9. Hope you enjoy the read.

The Water Diviner film is due for release in Australia on Boxing Day, through EOne and Universal, produced by Hopscotch Features and Fear of God Films.

The Water Diviner poster is here.

Universal Pictures have just released the artwork for official The Water Diviner poster. You can have a peek on the the Universal twitter link here. The film is due out on Boxing Day in Australia.

If you missed the official trailer there is now a YouTube link with all the credits which you can see here. There has also been a bit of press about the official trailer in Deadline and the Dailymail in the UK, with some great stills taken from the trailer.

For everyone who has been asking there should be some news on release dates for The Water Diviner novel in the next week or so. When I know, you’ll know.

Official Trailer for The Water Diviner

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The official trailer for the film was released this morning on Australian TV, on Channel Seven’s “Sunrise” program as a world exclusive. Click here for a preview and be amongst the first to see – it looks stunning. Russell Crowe, Andrew Lesnie, Cinematographer, and Chris Kennedy, the Production Designer, have done an beautiful job in bringing the story to the screen.

The film is set for a cinema release in Australia on Boxing Day.

Young Melburnian on The Water Diviner

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There has been a bit of press this last week about Dylan Georgiades, a young Greek-Aussie from Melbourne, who plays Orhan in The Water Diviner. Dylan had a crash course in Turkish to play the role of a young boy from Constantinople and did a wonderful job.

Dylan from his IMDB page

Dylan from his IMDB page

For his first major film role he had to skip some school to travel all over Australia, spent a couple of weeks in Istanbul and work with Russell Crowe. Nice work if you can get it! We caught up in Istanbul a couple of times, and he presents as a terrific, level-headed young man with loads of charm. I don’t dare say anything else – he’s about to do his grading for his black belt in karate. καλή τύχη, Dylan.

Read more about Dylan’s experience on The Water Diviner in his own words, here and here.

Water Divining with Weinstein

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As le carpet rouge is rolled up and the champagne bottles are put out for recycling at Cannes there are few bits of Water Diviner related news that may have escaped your attention. It was hard to miss Turkish director, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, winning the Palme d’Or for Winter Sleep – what’s the connection? Only that I love “Once Upon A Time in Anatolia”, his film that won the Grand Prix a couple of years ago. It was the first time I’d seen Yilmaz Erdogan on screen, despite the myriad films he has done, and it is a real pleasure for me to now see him in The Water Diviner. 

The other news, is that Russell has cut together a 12 minute teaser that he presented to potential distributors in Cannes. Deadline are reporting that Harvey Weinstein’s company, TWC, has offered $4 million and a widespread release in the US for The Water Diviner.  See their article here. It’s hard to imagine the film in better hands.

 

The First Official Look at The Water Diviner

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In case you missed it on Channel Seven tonight – or are overseas friends – here is a YouTube link to the first official look at The Water Diviner. It’s narrated by Russell Crowe, as he tells of his journey as a director and introduces the main cast including Olga Kurylenko, Jai Courtney, Ryan Corr, Yilmaz Erdogan and Cem Yilmaz. There is also some beautiful footage from location in Turkey, South Australia and Sydney – and just the slightest hint at the action you can expect to see. Russell and the extraordinary cast and crew are bringing this story to life in a way I could never have imagined. 

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(Russell Crowe on location in South Australia. Source: adelaidenow.com.au)

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