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Local Film Director Places Coogee On The International Map

By Sarah Healey on June 8, 2012 in News

Australia is home to an array of talented actors, writers and directors, many of whom our next-door neighbours, finding inspiration amongst the coastal landscape we roam around on a daily basis.

One such man is AFI Award-winning writer/director John Duigan. Over a period of around 35 years John has written and directed over twenty films, including coming of age classics The Year My Voice Broke and Flirting, and the multi-award winning series Vietnam, which starred Nicole Kidman.

After spending the best part of 15 years in Europe and the United States making films, John now resides in Coogee and he wants to continue to spend more time pursuing his passion in Australia.

His latest film, Careless Love, was released nationally on May 17. Careless Love delves into the life of Linh (Nammi Le), a Vietnamese Australian university student who secretly begins working as an escort. She tries to live her ‘normal’ life alongside her ‘other’ life, but when she begins a relationship with a fellow university student her two worlds eventually collide.

Much of the film is set in Coogee –, its streets, beach, headland and Dunningham Reserve all make appearances. As does John’s flat, where much of the filming takes place.

“It’s actually one of the main locations of the film… it’s definitely a way of saving money!” John laughed.

John was inspired to write this story while living in England, where the press wrote about how the financial recession was inspiring many students to opt for work in the sex industry to pay their way through university and not come out the other end in debt.

“I thought that would be an interesting subject to explore, and through the eyes of the main character we glimpse a range of people’s attitudes towards sex workers,” he said.

Careless Love is a compelling little snapshot of some important aspects of Australian culture and values, and it’sone movie you must go and see. For screening times and information, visit