One Less God: The making of an honest film about terrorism

Immersion: Central Coast-based actor Joseph Mahler Taylor, in the role of Sean, an Irish backpacker, in the film One Less God.When Central Coast filmmaker Lliam Worthington set out to make a movie basedof the terrorist attack on the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai in 2008, he tossed and turned about the best way to approach it.
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Worthington and co-producer Nelson Lau knew friendsinvolved in the tragedy, which saw terrorists kill 166 people and injured more than 600 over a three-day siege in the city, primarily in the stately old hotel. He read through accounts of survivors and others who described the carnage, the heroism and sheer terror of the event.

“I wrote lots of drafts,” he said, “but they were not active and truthful. They were survivor stories. They felt wrong and off. It took me sleepless nights to figure that out. There are some great stories of heroism and resilience.

“But the truth is, it is an overwhelming tragedy,” he said. “Most of the stories are of pain and suffering. To leave the audience in a happy place, the audience will park the story afterwards.”

One Less God trailerRather, Worthington chose to look closer at the issues confronting both the families of survivors, and the world overall. The pain had to be acknowledged, the basic question of mankind’s ability to survive such differences, such abhorrence, had to be present.

“For those people, who realise those questions are still facing us . . . once I realised that, it had to be truthful.”

The film,One Less God, wasshot over 63 days at the Carrington Hotel in Katoomba, and sets on the Central Coast and Sydneyas well as in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Challenge: One Less God film director Lliam Worthington on the set.

One Less Godwill screen on Saturday night at the Real Film Festival at Tower Cinemas on King Street, Newcastle. The session begins at 8pm and includes three short films. The movie, which is rated 18+, will be followed by a question and answer session with Worthington and other talent from the movie.

The movie won Best Film at the 2017 Byron Bay Film Festival and the Grand Jury Prize and Best Feature at the 2017 Dances with Films Festival in Los Angeles.

One Less Godfeatures an ensemble of mostly n actors, with the lead role of Sean, a backpacker strandedin the hotel, played by Joseph Mahler Taylor, an actor who also lives on the Central Coast.

The film is apolitical for the most part, with Worthington steering away from a blow-by-blow retelling of the sequence of events and government response and military action.

Instead, Worthington drills down on individuals.

House of war: A still from the movie One Less God, which is set during the 2008 siege of the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai, India.

There is a grandfather and his granddaughter, played by SukhRaj Deepak and Mihika Rao, who have come to the city to visit the little girl’s mother, who is dying of cancer in a hospital. While we watch the grandfather comfort and console the girl at points in the movie, things come to a head near the end of the movie when a pair of gun-toting terrorists knock on their hotel room door.

With so many people involved, there are thousands of stories. Worthington admitted: “as a storyteller, you have to cherry-pick a few”.

“The story of protecting a child –it’s not just a physical reality, but a psychological reality, to rear our children and move our children forward,” he said.

Working on a limited budget, and not being able to access Mumbai during the making of the film, created its own set of obstacles.

“A big part of the challenge, was making it seem big,” Worthington said. “It’s a theatre of the mind.”

One major tool was the use of news footage of the terrorist attack, which makes it instantly feel real and fraught with danger.

One Less God director Lliam WorthingtonHouse of War in other markets, has a running time of 133 minutes.

Itwas released in Japan last week. It has been sold into Korea, China, UK, USA and .

Made by New Realms Films, based on the Central Coast, it was financed without government assistance.

One Less God will show incinemas in India in November, exactly 10 years afterthe siege in Mumbai.

One Less God screens at the Real Film Festival, Tower Cinemas, Newcastle, at 8pm on Saturday, October 27, followed by a Q & A session with director Lliam Worthington.

SA leggie Pope sets Shield bowling record

Lloyd Pope, the youngest bowler to take seven wickets in a Sheffield Shield innings, is having a chuckle.
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The South n bagged a record-breaking 7-87 on Thursday against Queensland.

Pope is the only 18-year-old in the Shield’s 126-year history to capture seven wickets in an innings – he was oblivious to his record until told by a journalist.

But that’s not why he’s laughing.

Pope giggles when told he’s being called a saviour of n cricket – a cult hero; a star; prodigy; wizard.

Heck, some punters are even calling him a Test cricketer this summer – all this, before he finishes his second first-class game.

“Oh, right,” he said with a chuckle when told of social media reaction to his feat.

“I haven’t really checked my phone too much … a couple of my mates send me through some things. I think I am on Twitter but I don’t really use it too much.”

Pope’s stunning haul helped to bowl Queensland out for 231 at Adelaide Oval, with the Redbacks 0-39 at stumps on the opening day.

Aged 18 years and 328 days, he’s the youngest to collect seven wickets in a Shield innings, eclipsing the benchmark set by famed larrikin Doug Walters, who was 19 years and 50 days when taking 7-63 in 1964-65 for NSW.

“I wasn’t aware of that,” Pope said.

“I don’t really follow those statistics like that. I’m a cricket nuffie but I don’t sort of hunt through the books and look for records or things like that.

“That’s the first time I heard it. It’s pretty good, I guess.”

The self-effacing Pope still pinches himself that he’s even playing on the hallowed Adelaide Oval, let alone setting records.

“Just walking out there at the start of play and realising my name is on the scoreboard and that’s it happening – it’s an amazing feeling,” he said.

“It’s a strange feeling to have cameras and things in my face.

“But I try and take it both ways. I know some days it will be another bloke’s turn and they will take five-for.

“I just take it as it comes and, if it doesn’t, just try and keep working on my game.”

Three of Pope’s victims fell to vicious wrong’uns, including the prized scalp of top-scorer Joe Burns, who made 64.

All of Queensland’s batsmen had trouble picking his much-googled googly but the modest Pope put it down to luck.

“Some of them were a bit lucky off the wicket. Some were turning and some weren’t – favourable conditions,” he said.

Prudential regulator boss defends agency

The head of ‘s prudential regulator says his agency has not failed the community in its supervision of financial institutions, after a banking royal commission exposed widespread misconduct in the sector.
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n Prudential Regulation Authority chair Wayne Byres has told a hearing in Canberra that the regulator’s job is to ensure the financial system is safe and sound, and that is what it has done.

“There’s absolutely no case at all to say that we have failed,” he told a Senate estimates hearing on Thursday.

“There is no question that the financial system is sound and robust.”

His comments came under questioning by Labor senator Chris Ketter, who said APRA has been referred to as a “hear no evil, see no evil” regulator.

“I reject the depiction,” Mr Byres said.

Senator Ketter also said that the royal commission’s interim report, released last month, noted APRA has never taken a financial institution to court for misconduct.

Mr Byres said APRA’s enforcement measures go beyond legal action.

“I think we do use our tools to achieve change within the industry and to get problems rectified when we see them,” he said.

But he said the regulator is reviewing its “enforcement philosophy”, governance of enforcement decisions and the resources it commits to keeping institutions in line.

APRA has flagged in its submission to the royal commission that it could potentially employ stronger enforcement powers to achieve “general deterrence” across the industry, he added.

Mr Byres said robustness of the financial system hasn’t made evidence at the royal commission any less “confronting or uncomfortable”.

But the soundness of the system will help the financial sector make the improvements it needs to, he said.

“We are thankfully working on these from a position of financial strength.”

Royal commissioner Kenneth Hayne released a scathing three-volume interim report in September, highlighting an insidious culture of greed and profit over basic decency permeating the big banks.

He also took aim at regulators for cosying up to financial services firms and striking limp deals in response to systemic misbehaviour rather than pursuing tough prosecutions.

Shield wickets tumble on new-look MCG deck

The MCG drop-in wicket had become so flat, fast bowler Chris Tremain says even the batsmen were sick of it.
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But all that changed when 13 wickets tumbled on a dramatic opening day of the Victoria-NSW Sheffield Shield match.

Tremain snared 5-47 as Victoria won the toss and blasted NSW out for 159.

Victorian captain Peter Handscomb will be kicking himself for his cheap dismissal in the second-last over of Thursday’s play, given the state of the game and the Test batting spots on offer.

But the home side was still well-placed at 3-101, with opener Marcus Harris making 51no.

It is the first Victorian home match of the season and much of the pre-game focus was on how the pitch would play.

The ICC rated last year’s Ashes Boxing Day pitch as poor after the tame draw – the first time that has happened to an n Test venue. .

The last MCG Shield result was NSW’s innings win in February last year, with four draws since.

“After last season … I think we would rather see the game go two and a half days and get a result than bang out another draw,” Tremain said.

“Even the batsmen were sick of sitting in the field for two days.

“We could have pulled up stumps half way through a game there … if we were allowed to bet on cricket games we could have retired after the Test because there was no way that was going to be a result either.”

Tremain said the pitch still produced a tennis ball bounce during day one, but thought there was better carry through to the keeper even after lunch.

“It is lively, but it is ‘slow lively’,” he added of the noticeably-green deck.

After paceman Trent Copeland struck early to leave Victoria in trouble at 2-6, Harris and Handscomb combined for a crucial 93-run stand.

Handscomb made 48 before he chased a wide ball from leg-spinner Daniel Fallins a few minutes before stumps.

The edge bounced off the gloves of wicketkeeper Peter Nevill and Copeland took the catch at first slip.

Earlier, leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed’s 3-18 helped wrap up the NSW tail, while Scott Boland sparked the collapse by snaring the key wicket of teen sensation Jack Edwards immediately after lunch for 34.

Kurtis Patterson top-scored with 63.

NSW struck early trouble at 3-55, but steadied through a 50-run stand between Patterson and Edwards and were 3-103 at lunch.

Edwards fell in the second over after the break and that triggered a 7-56 collapse.

Dispute causes shutdown of crane at Newcastle TAFE site

Dispute causes crane shutdown at Hunter Street site Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil
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Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

Police on scene at the Hunter Street TAFE Art School, where CFMEU Union Officials have shut down the site.. Picture: Marina Neil

TweetFacebookThe Herald understands the Boom Logistics crane company was originally approached to complete Thursday’s job aspart ofthe Hunter Street TAFE restoration project, but workers have since gone on strike.

“Mobile crane workers in Newcastle, Singleton, and Wollongongwho have not had a pay increase in more than five years, have launched an indefinite strike after the breakdown in talks with their employers,” a CFMEU statement said.

“More than 100 workers at Boom Logistics and WGC cranes have taken legally protected strike action because of the companies’ failure to offer a fair pay deal despite months of negotiations.”

Notified of the impending workplace action, the project contractor 3 Cross Pty Ltdbooked an alternative company to complete the job.

The works were halted for most of the day as police and Safe Work NSWwere called in to asses the site and negotiatebetween the parties.

Police are at the scene of a ‘demarcation’ dispute on Hunter Street pic.twitter成都夜总会招聘/N8cU7epLT1

— Newcastle Herald (@newcastleherald) October 25, 2018

Read the full report in tomorrow’s Herald.

READ MORE:Read more about the strike action here.