17/7/2014: THE MAN FROM COX’S RIVER RIDES AHEAD
Since its March 2014 premiere at the Byron Bay Film Festival, the low budget doco, The Man from Cox’s River – about a mob of brumbies - has quietly but busily collected over $100,000 at 140 screenings, mostly in family run regional heritage cinemas – and collected the 2014 Heritage Award in the Education Interpretation category, awarded in May. And it’s about to be taken to an even wider audience through several Event cinemas.
Producer/director Russell Kilbey says the film’s success has grown as word of mouth spread, so much so that at the first screenings at Sydney’s Roseville cinema, people queued and jostled to gain entry.
Event will screen the film in Canberra from August 10, in Newcastle from August 17 and shortly thereafter in Cronulla, as market test screenings.
The background to the film is full of historical interest.
Luke Carlon grew up taking tourists on horse trips along the Cox's river, a place his family has ridden since the 1820's. Everyone came to ride along this pristine valley for up to a week including the rich and famous. All that ended nearly 20 years ago when the river was declared a wilderness area, the business closed and Luke's father died.
After a long history of difficult relations between the National Parks and the Carlons, a thoughtful National Parks Ranger Chris Banffy has a problem he thinks Luke might be able to solve. A wiley mob of brumbies inhabit the Burragorang valley, a water catchment area sealed off to the general public for over fifty years. Classed as feral pests, National Parks head office needs Chris to remove the animals from Sydney's water supply without any of the outcry that has marred some previous control operations using shooters in helicopters. Unlike any other horse relocation program in Australia the only access to the trap-yards is either by helicopter or horseback.
Email this article