Dacre Montgomery is best known for playing the character Billy Hargrove in hit Netflix show Stranger Things
A film starring Stranger Things actor Dacre Montgomery and Phantom Thread lead Vicky Krieps will shoot in Canterbury next year.
The film, called Went Up The Hill, will be a ghost story co-written and directed by Christchurch born Samuel Van Grinsven.
Montgomery is best known for playing Billy Hargrove in hit television show Stranger Things, while Krieps shot to fame after starring opposite Daniel Day Lewis in the 2017 period drama Phantom Thread.
Van Grinsven’s debut film, Sequin in A Blue Room, premiered at the Sydney Film Festival in 2019.
Season 4 of Stranger Things is now available to stream on Netflix.
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Kiwi co-producer Vicky Pope, of POP Film, said they planned to start production in Canterbury next year.
“We are very excited about heading down to Christchurch,” she said.
“We will have part of our team based in the city. When we shoot we will dance around various locations in Canterbury.”
She said the production chose to film in Canterbury for the local landscapes and because of an incentive grant provided by the regional film office, Screen CanterburyNZ.
“They have done a fantastic job with supporting projects to come and work there. The grant programme is a quite critical part to enable us to consider that.”
Screen CanterburyNZ published a synopsis of the film on its website.
“Abandoned as a child, Jack ventures to remote New Zealand to attend the funeral of his estranged mother and there meets her grieving widow, Jill.
“But his search for answers becomes dangerous when his mother’s ghost returns to inhabit both Jack and Jill, using each of their bodies to speak to the other, instigating a life-threatening nocturnal dance between the three of them.”
Screen CanterburyNZ has $1.5 million in funding over three years from tourism and investment agency ChristchurchNZ. The fund is designed to attract more film and television production to Canterbury and help build production skills in the region.
Screen CanterburyNZ manager Petrina D’Rozario said Went Up The Hill would involve five weeks of pre-production in Christchurch, 23 shooting days in Canterbury, and employ 28 local crew members.
She said the production grant was helping to bring films and television shows to the region.
“It is giving companies the confidence that Canterbury is a film friendly location. We have got the crew and the capability.”
Canterbury is experiencing a “little renaissance” in moviemaking, with a series of productions based in the region.
A new movie by the production company behind Taika Waititi’s hit films Hunt for the Wilderpeople and Jojo Rabbit was being shot in Lyttelton Harbour in August, while the company behind television hits like Mad Men, Orange Is The New Black and The Walking Dead is helping fund a six-part television drama expected to film in Christchurch early next year.
Coming of age film Head South is currently shooting in Christchurch and the family film Trolgar and Me is set to start shooting in Canterbury in January.
Entertainment news website Deadline first reported on Went Up The Hill. Deadline said the production was mainly funded by the New Zealand Film Commission and Screen Australia. The film is a co-production between Causeway Films, which made horror movie The Babadook, and POP Films, which made the hit gang movie Savage.
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