The Devil's Playground (1976 film)
- For other uses, see Devil's Playground (disambiguation).
|The Devil's Playground|
|Directed by||Fred Schepisi|
|Produced by||Fred Schepisi|
|Written by||Fred Schepisi|
|Music by||Bruce Smeaton|
|Edited by||Brian Kavanagh|
|The Film House|
|Distributed by||Fred Schepisi
|Release date(s)||12 August 1976|
|Running time||107 minutes|
|Box office||A$334,000 (Australia)|
The Devil's Playground is a 1976 semi-autobiographical film by Australian director Fred Schepisi. It tells the story of a boy growing up and going to school in a Catholic seminary. Its focus is on the trials of the flesh and the tensions that arise, for both priests and students, from the religious injunction to control one's sexuality.
In August 1953, the 13-year old Tom Allan attends a Catholic seminary in Melbourne, Australia. Students and brothers face individual challenges of faith and self-restraint.
- Arthur Dignam - Brother Francine
- Nick Tate - Brother Victor
- Simon Burke - Tom Allen
- Charles McCallum - Brother Sebastian
- John Frawley - Brother Celian
- Jonathan Hardy - Brother Arnold
- Gerry Duggan - Father Hanrahan
- Peter Cox - Brother James
- Thomas Keneally - Father Marshall
- John Diedrich - Fitz
- Alan Cinis - Waite
- Richard Morgan - Smith
- Jeremy Kewley - Thompson
The screenplay was based on Schepisi's own experience attending a Catholic seminary and took him five years to write. The film financing took three years to arrange, eventually coming from the Australian Film Commission ($100,000) and the Film House, Schepisi's own company ($154,000), with the balance coming from private investment.
The film won the 1976 Australian Film Institute Award for Best Film, Best Direction, Best Lead Actor for both Simon Burke and Nick Tate, Best Screenplay, Best Achievement in Cinematography, and the Jury Prize.
The Devil's Playground was released on DVD with a new print by Umbrella Entertainment in November 2008. The DVD is compatible with all region codes and includes special features such as the theatrical trailer, an interview with Fred Schepisi, and audio commentary with Fred Schepisi. This film was released on Blu-ray by Umbrella Entertainment in June 2014, with extras.
- Pike, Andrew; Cooper, Ross (1998). Australian Film 1900–1977: A Guide to Feature Film Production, Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p. 303.
- Malone, Peter (22 December 1998). "Fred Schepisi". Signis (interview). Archived from the original on 22 December 2013. Retrieved 22 December 2013.
- Stratton, David (1980). The Last New Wave: The Australian Film Revival, Angus & Robertson. p. 134.
- Stratton, p.131-132
- "AFI Award Winners Feature Categories 1958–2009" (PDF). Australian Film Institute Awards (Australian Film Institute). Retrieved 13 December 2013.
- French, Lisa; Poole, Mark (2009). Shining a Light: 50 Years of the Australian Film Institute. Australian Teachers of Media. p. 165. ISBN 1-876467-20-7.
- "Past Winners". AFI.org.au. Archived from the original on July 21, 2008.
- "Film Victoria - Australian Films at the Australian Box Office". Film Victoria. 27 September 2010. Archived from the original on 12 March 2011.
- "Umbrella Entertainment - Devil's Playground, The". Retrieved 8 May 2013.
- The Devil's Playground at the Internet Movie Database
- The Devil's Playground at the National Film and Sound Archive
- The Devil's Playground at Oz Movie
- The Devil's Playground at Anything Oz or New Zealand website