By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on October 4, 2018
HOT on the heels of Albany-bred author Tim Winton’s book-to-film adaption of Breath being filmed in Denmark and the announcement of new movie Rams to be filmed in Mount Barker until December, Albany will have its time to shine with a new feature film commencing shooting in town next month.
H is for Happiness will tell the story of Candice Phee, a 12-year-old girl determined to bring happiness and joy back to her family following a tragedy.
The tale will follow Candice and a new friend she meets on their joint quest to find happiness, and has been described as a “very sweet, family drama comedy” by director John Sheedy.
Mr Sheedy remained tight-lipped on the final cast list when talking to The Weekender, but revealed the movie will be filmed entirely in Albany from the second week of November and feature many iconic Albany locations.
He said Albany will keep its name in the film and feature in the opening line of the movie – “A is for Albany”.
“I love the bottom part of Albany; it has this old-world sense,” Mr Sheedy said.
“It’s very charming and quirky, and the coastal landscapes are beautiful.”
Mr Sheedy said the windfarm, the old yacht club, the “Lady Gaga mansion” – Maitraya Private Retreat – York Street and Albany Senior High School are among the locations to be used for the film.
He’s excited to see what the Albany landscape can offer, explore its uniqueness and work alongside locals.
“There’s something very special about WA,” Mr Sheedy said.
“There’s a lot of character and charm, great views, it’s not flat and there are so many talented artists here.
“There must be something in the water.”
Head of production and development for ScreenWest Matt Horrocks said he is excited to get WA back into the spotlight with H is for Happiness.
He revealed the new movie will be one of many programs to be filmed in and around the Great Southern in the coming months.
ScreenWest is one of the companies involved in H is for Happiness’ production investment.
“WA is the busiest state in the country at the moment,” Mr Horrocks said.
“There’s been projects in the Kimberley, Busselton and Denmark, and now Albany will be the star of the show.
“We are really thrilled that a series of TV shows and films for around the South West and down your way [Albany] will be announced in the next few weeks.
“The Great Southern has some of the most extraordinary locations, of which some can be hard to get to for shooting, so we are trying to activate those extraordinary locations.”
Mr Horrocks said he is “very keen” on H is for Happiness and believes people from all over Australia will love it.