Telemovies & Miniseries

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Big Toys

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Producer: Alan Burke
Writer: Patrick White
Director: Chris Thomson

A brittle comedy of sexual politics in which the biggest toy of all is uranium. Behind the domestic triangle of a Queen's Counsel, Ritchie Bousanquet, his promiscuous wife, Mag, and an idealist trade union leader, Terry Legge, is a sharp indictment, by a veteran critic of the vacant heart, of what he sees as the frivolous misuse in Australian corridors of power and responsibilities that comes with privilege.

Cast: Diane Cilento, John Goden, Max Cullen

Burn The Butterflies

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Producer: Oscar Whitbread
Writer: Cliff Green
Director: Oscar Whitbread

A nuclear disaster in Scotland has thrown the whole question of uranium mining in Australia open to impassioned debate. The Government is divided and against a background of community protest and public discord, the Prime Minister has to make the most serious decision of his career.

Cast: Ray Barrett, Frederick Parslow, Gerald Maguire, George Mallaby, Alan Hopgood, Monica Maughan, Rowena Wallace, John Wood

Coralie Lansdowne Says No

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Executive Producer: Alan Burke
Producer: Alan Burke
Writer: Alex Buzo
Director: Michael Carson

Coralie, a self-styled 'high-flying bird', refuses to be tied down to convention, or to the affections of any one of the men in her life. However, her stay in an ex-lover's beach house, plus a series of visitors, make for radical changes and a possible solution to Coralie's place in the world.

Cast: Wendy Hughes, David Waters, Brian Blain, Robert Coleby, Elaine Mangan, Mary-Lou Stewart, Basil Clarke

The Dolebludgers

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Executive Producer: Keith Wilkes
Writer: John Martin
Director: David Zweck

A study of the plight of Australian teenagers seeking work.

Cast: Diane Smith, Paul Jones, Tim Robertson, Val Lehman, Carol Burns

John Sullivan Story

Year: 1979
Produced by Crawfords Australia
Executive Producer: Jock Blair, Hector Crawford
Producer: John Baringham
Writers: Brian Wright, Tony Morphett
Directors: Peter Gawler, David Stevens

In 1941 John Sullivan, the son of Australia's most loved television series, was on a ship in the Mediterranean when it was torpedoed. His family heard nothing of him for more than two years. This is the story of what happened.

Cast: Andrew MacFarlane, Susan Haworth, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Wendy Hughes, Peter Carroll, Olivia Hamnett, Frank Gallacher, Ronald Lewis, Jonathan Hardy, Roger Oakley, Carol Burns, Ronald Falk, Vera Plevnic

Ride on Stranger

July 15 - Aug 05, 1979
Executive Producer: Alan Burke
Writer: Peter Yeldham
Director: Carl Schultz

The story of a strong-minded young woman growing up in the 1930s — a time when Australia was just emerging from the Depression years and news of dark events in Europe were mere echoes from different worlds. The story spans eight years in the life of Shannon Jones, as she develops from country girl to mature woman. Neither her simple farming family nor her eccentric aunt in a nearby town can give scope for her enquiring mind. Leaving behind the country she starts a new life in Sydney where she embraces new philosophies and experiences in a growing city eagerly finding its own identity in a changing era. The consequences are challenging and unpredictable.

Cast: Liddy Clark, Noni Hazlehurst, Warwick Sims, Henri Szeps, Peter Carroll

A Toast To Melba

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Producer: Alan Burke
Writer: Jack Hibberd
Director: Alan Burke

A vaudeville biography of Nellie Melba, from her childhood in Richmond to her death, at 70, in Sydney. Her unsuccessful marriage, her notorious affair with the Duke of Orleans, her triumphs across the world in opera and her final decline are depicted against a checkerboard of the eccentrics who surround her. A 'repertory' cast of eight plays 20 characters, to Robyn Nevin's Melba.

Cast: Robyn Nevin, Michael Aitkens, Henri Szeps, Anna Volska

Wild Ass of a Man

Year: 1979
Produced by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Producer: Oscar Whitbread
Writer: Michael Boddy
Director: Norman Johnson

James Muldoon, 'a wild ass of a man', retraces the steps of his unusual life to explain how he ended up a derelict. From late school days through university, where he meets his one true love; to a country town where, as a teacher, he becomes involved with a senior girl student; to the Correspondence School, where he is introduced to the world of artists; finally to the traumatic shock of the death of his true love.

Cast: Max Gillies, Olga Tamara, Lisa Spano, Cornelia Frances, Carillo Gantner