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Alex Russell Network

June 22nd, 2017

‘Jungle’ and ‘Rabbit’ Set for MIFF Premieres

Great news! Two of Alex’s films are set to premiere at the 66th Melbourne International Film Festival: Jungle, which was selected as the opening film of the festival, and Rabbit. The festival runs August 3rd to 20th. The program will be launched on July 11, with tickets going on sale starting from July 14th. Here is the list of the six films premiering at the festival:

The Butterfly Tree, the feature debut of director Priscilla Cameron, is a coming-of-age tale of love and loss tinged with magical realism, starring Melissa George, Ewen Leslie, Ed Oxenbould and Sophie Lowe.

Naina Sen’s The Song Keepers chronicles the hidden musical legacy of ancient Aboriginal languages and German baroque songs that are being preserved by the Central Australian Aboriginal Women’s Choir.

Eddie Martin’s Have You Seen the Listers? is a moving personal account of the artistic and commercial rise of Australia’s most renowned street artist, which came with a deep personal cost.

In Westwind: Djalu’s Legacy, director Ben Strunin portrays Yolngu elder Djalu Gurruwiwi’s quest to pass his people’s ancient song lines and culture to the next generation – with a little help from global pop star Gotye.

Rabbit is a chilling fairytale feature debut from director Luke Shanahan in which identical twins are linked by more than just DNA, starring Alex Russell and Adelaide Clemens.

The opening night selection, Jungle stars Alex Russell and Daniel Radcliffe in a thriller based on the real-life story of adventurer Yossi Ghinsberg.

Source: IF Magazine

By Jasper
May 6th, 2017

Alex Russell to Star in ‘Brampton’s Own’

New project alert! Alex and iZombie‘s Rose McIver are set to star in Brampton’s Own, which will be directed by Michael Doneger. Other cast members include Scott Porter, Spencer Grammer, John Getz, and Jean Smart. Alex will portray a recently retired minor-league baseball player who returns to his small hometown in hopes of repairing the strained relationships between him, his family and old friends including a former girlfriend now engaged to the town’s popular dentist. The film starts shooting this week in Los Angeles.

Source: Deadline

By Jasper
March 2nd, 2017

Alex Russell to Star in ‘Sons of Salt’

New project alert! Alex is set to star in Sons of Salt,  the story of an ex-con trying to get his life together who is reluctantly drawn into a dangerous world by his pro-surfer brother. This is the first feature film from Five Lip Films, a production company that Alex is a founder of. Their latest project, Picture Wheel, a short film that also stars Alex, is set to premiere at the California Cinequest Festival tomorrow!

O’Donnell also wrote the script for Sons of Salt, which leading man Russell previously described to IF as “a brutal vicious crime drama set in Maroubra over four different time periods.”

The project is currently being financed, with a budget mooted around the $3-4 million mark. O’Donnell tells IF he’s hoping to start shooting in Sydney in the second half of 2017.

Sunny Abberton, who wrote, produced and directed Bra Boys, is attached as an EP alongside Adam Schroeder (The Truman Show, Chronicle).

Jonathan Auf der Heide was previously attached to direct, but stepped away in 2014 to focus on Mongrel, an outback thriller set to star Aden Young and Aaron Pedersen which fell over the following year.

Picture Wheel co-producer (and Stan’s Head of Originals) Rob Gibson is producing Sons of Salt, which previously received development funding from Screen Australia.

Source: IF Magazine

By Jasper
February 4th, 2017

Alex Russell to Star in Sci-Fi Thriller ‘Attach’

“Chronicle” star Alex Russell has come on board the sci-fi thriller “Attach” with Chris Gorak directing from his own script.

Adam Schroeder, whose producing credits include “Chronicle” and “Sleepy Hollow,” will produce under his Adam Schroeder Entertainment banner alongside Rob Paris (“The Blackcoat’s Daughter”) of Paris Film. Highland Film Group will handle international sales, and introduce to buyers next week at the Berlin Film Festival. UTA Independent will rep the U.S. rights.

Russell will portray a star athlete who undergoes an experimental surgery that permanently attaches a cutting-edge bionic arm and leg to his body after he loses his own in a car accident. But when he realizes the advanced intelligent prosthetics may have a destructive mind of their own, he begins a desperate fight to save himself and everyone around him.

“We’re going to explore the most current and innovative science and technology in this film,” said Schroeder. “I couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of Chris Gorak’s provocative vision and distinctive worldview.”

Source: Variety

By Jasper
August 20th, 2016

‘Blood in the Water’ Release Date

Blood in the Water, previously known as Pacific Standard Time, will open in select theaters on August 26th! The film stars Willa Holland, Alex Russell, and Miguel Gomez. Variety has also reported that the film will be available on demand on Time Warner Cable, Comcast, iTunes, DirecTV, Amazon Instant, Dish Network, Vubiquity, Vudu and others, on the same day.

Percy (Alex Russell) and Veronica (Willa Holland) have been housesitting at a palatial modern spread in the Hollywood Hills for the summer, but the real world of New York, jobs and young professional struggles are merely days away. Nonetheless they are in a hurry to leave this paradise, because the tranquility was broken by an unwanted visit by former college classmate Freedgood (Miguel Gomez). His time since their liberal arts’ years has been marked by imprisonment, shady business associations, and drug dealing. And as we learn quickly, this has lead to the man’s demise, an interested LAPD detective, and a longing for the everyday strife that seems so much more desirable than staying in their false Eden.

By Jasper
July 7th, 2016

Alex Russell on the Authentic Heart of ‘Goldstone’ and Breaking Big in Hollywood

Check out this interview of Sydney Morning Herald with Alex, wherein he talks about Goldstone and his latest project, Granite Mountain.

Out in the backblocks of New Mexico, Alex Russell is enjoying a well-earned day off.

It’s the Fourth of July holiday weekend and the in-demand Australian actor is cooling off after another taxing week on the set of Granite Mountain.

It’s a Hollywood drama about a group of firefighters caught up in a deadly wildfire that is directed by Tron: Legacy‘s Joseph Kosinski and co-stars Jeff Bridges, Josh Brolin and Taylor Kitsch.

“The last shot yesterday we had was a plane flying overhead, dumping slurry and water near us with a real backburn lit,” Russell says. “The heat coming off it was tremendous – it was only a few feet high, but it was three times hotter than a normal fire because movie fires use diesel for a slow burn. We were really feeling it.”

The 28-year-old has been feeling for it for a while now. Prior to starting Granite Mountain, he starred alongside Daniel Radcliffe in the forthcoming Jungle, which was shot in Queensland’s tropical north. Before that he spent six weeks in the state’s desert outback, making Goldstone, an Australian crime thriller from the writer-director Ivan Sen.

“I need to play a businessman in an air-conditioned office sipping a latte where the only continuity required is refilling that latte for every take,” says the affable Russell. “I’d really like that.”

Goldstone brings back Jay Swan, the laconic Indigenous police detective played by Aaron Pedersen, who was at the centre of Sen’s acclaimed Mystery Road in 2014.

Assigned a missing person’s case in a remote town, the troubled lawman has to work with Russell’s Josh, the sole local police officer and someone who’s either ignored the corruption Jay uncovers or shepherded it.

“I thought it was the best Australian script I’d ever read,” Russell says. “I was so impressed with, on one hand, the heart of it, the authenticity, and the beautiful voice. Then, on the other hand, how great the structure was. As an artist you check things off and it had this grounded integrity, but it was still going to be super entertaining.”

Amidst Sen’s evocatively sparse filmmaking, and a supporting cast that includes Jacki Weaver and David Wenham, Russell’s performance is increasingly tightly wound, showing how the “she’ll be right” mentality can take you to the very cusp of breaking bad.

“You realise that Josh is a guy who’s chosen the easy way, as so many of us, including me, do all the time. And they’re never the moments you’re proud of, because growth comes with the tougher route,” he says. “He needs someone like Jay to come along and challenge his integrity.”

The son of a surgeon father and nurse mother who grew up in Rockhampton and graduated from NIDA, Russell has been on cinema screens for all of six years.

He had his first Hollywood hit in 2012 with the teen superpowers thriller Chronicle, and since then has alternated roles in blockbusters such as Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken with Australian smaller productions such as Cut Snake and now Goldstone.

“I love being a part of great stories and I love being at home in my own country,” Russell says. “The fact that we make some awesome films and that sometimes I get to be a part of them makes me really happy. I’ll always, always do that.”

Russell is also part of Five Lip Films, a collective of young Australian creatives divided between Sydney and Los Angeles. He’s been involved in the writing and directing of three short films, with a fourth on the way and a feature film, Sons of Salt, in development through Screen Australia.

It helps balance out the commercial demands of Hollywood, although Russell believes in the creative worth of the movie industry’s epicentre.

“People with great talent and a great deal behind them are always ready to sit down and give you advice on your script or the cut of your short film,” Russell says. “There’s definitely an icky element in Hollywood, but there’s also something special about driving around the back lots of famous studios where some of the greatest films of all time were created. I truly believe in the magic of it all.”

By Jasper
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