Alexandra's Project

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Alexandra's Project
Theatrical film poster
Directed byRolf de Heer
Written byRolf de Heer
Produced byRolf de Heer
Domenico Procacci
Julie Ryan
StarringGary Sweet
Helen Buday
CinematographyIan Jones
Edited byTania Nehme
Music byGraham Tardif
Vertigo Productions Pty. Ltd.
The Australian Film Commission
Fandango Australia
Hendon Studios
Palace Films
The South Australian Film Corporation
Distributed byPalace Films
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
Release date
  • 8 May 2003 (2003-05-08) (Australia)
Running time
103 minutes
Box officeA$844,494 (Australia)

Alexandra's Project is a 2003 Australian drama thriller film written and directed by Rolf de Heer and starring Gary Sweet and Helen Buday.


Upon returning home from work on his birthday, Steve, a middle class husband and father of two, finds the house dark and his family not home. He notices a chair, his television set, and a video tape obviously set out for his viewing. He turns the TV and VCR on, and begins to watch a tape made for him by his wife, Alexandra. The first clip shows his wife and children wishing him a happy birthday, but after the kids leave the room, Alexandra begins a striptease, and it appears to be nothing more than a birthday gift. As it progresses, however, it becomes clear that the tape is designed to humiliate and torture Steve for marital problems that Alexandra has been stewing about for years. As part of her 'show', Alexandra feigns breast cancer, has sex with their neighbour, and tells Steve that neither she nor their two children are ever coming home.[1]


  • Gary Sweet as Steve
  • Helen Buday as Alexandra
  • Bogdan Koca as Bill
  • Jack Christie as Sam
  • Samantha Knigge as Emma
  • Eileen Darley as Christine
  • Geoff Revell as Rodney
  • Philip Spruce as Taxi Driver
  • Nathan O'Keefe as Man at Door
  • Peter Greena as Chairman
  • Martha Lott as Female Worker
  • Cindy Elliott as Female Worker
  • Gemma Falk as Female Worker
  • Nicole Daniel as Female Worker
  • Duncan Graham as Male Worker
  • Michael Ienna as Male Worker


De Heer originally wanted to make the film so he could use a single location and use up various fragments of ideas he had accumulated.[2]


The film's world premiere was 14 February 2003 as part of the Berlin International Film Festival[3] and was released regularly as Cinema release on 8 May 2003 in Australia.


Box office[edit]

Alexandra's Project took $844,494 at the box office in Australia.[4]

Critical reception[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has rating of 53% based on 19 reviews, with an average 5.56/10 rating.[5] The Cultural Post gave it three out of five stars.[1]


Award Category Subject Result
AACTA Awards
(2003 AFI Awards)
Best Film Rolf de Heer Nominated
Domenico Procacci Nominated
Julie Ryan Nominated
Best Actress Helen Buday Nominated
Best Editing Tania Nehme Nominated
Best Original Music Score Graham Tardif Nominated
Best Sound James Currie Nominated
Rory McGregor Nominated
Nada Mikas Nominated
Andrew Plain Nominated
Berlin International Film Festival Golden Bear Rolf de Heer Nominated
Chicago International Film Festival Gold Hugo for Best Feature Nominated
FCCA Awards Best Director Nominated
Best Original Screenplay Won
Best Film Nominated
Domenico Procacci Nominated
Julie Ryan Nominated
Best Actor - Male Gary Sweet Nominated
Best Actor - Female Helen Buday Nominated
Best Supporting Actor - Male Bogdan Koca Nominated
Best Editing Tania Nehme Nominated
Golden Trailer Awards Best Foreign Dramatic Trailer Nominated
Inside Film Awards Best Direction Rolf de Heer Nominated
Best Actress Helen Buday Nominated
Best Sound James Currie Nominated
Nada Mikas Nominated
Andrew Plain Nominated
Montreal World Film Festival Golden Zenith for Best Film from Oceania Rolf de Heer Won
Valladolid International Film Festival Golden Spike Nominated
Best Actress Helen Buday Won

Home media[edit]

Alexandra's Project was released by Fandango Australia / Palace Films as a DVD in 2003.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Khoi Do, Anh (10 September 2010). "Alexandra's Project (2003)". The Cultural Post. Retrieved 2 December 2013.
  2. ^ Andrew L Urban, "DE HEER, ROLF: ALEXANDRA'S PROJECT", Urban Cinefile accessed 11 November 2012
  3. ^ Alexandra's Project - Berlinale 2003
  4. ^ "Film Victoria - Australian Films at the Australian Box Office" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 February 2011. Retrieved 9 October 2010.
  5. ^ "Alexandra's Project (2003)". Rotten Tomatoes.

External links[edit]