“When the House is Empty” is the working title of an upcoming community initiated feature movie being shot on location in Narrandera with the future intention of creating a small film school in the town.
The film’s director Timothy Hills is well known in Narrandera and has strong family links to the area which led him to purchase a home in the town in 2012.
As a teacher based in Brisbane, Tim consistently travels down to Narrandera every school holidays to not only reconnect with people, but to strengthen his own maternal roots and sense of belonging to this unique community.
The feature film When The House Is Empty has been reimagined and rewritten.
It is the story of a young woman who resides in the city but inherits a house from her father in a small country town. This is where her journey of the long dark night begins.
Ten years ago Narrandera residents will recall Timothy coordinated a brilliant group of people to make a short film titled “The Whole of the Moon” on location in Narrandera.
This was always done with the idea that one day it would lead to a feature length movie being produced.
After the encouragement of significant women in his life, the decision was made to finally get started on this second project.
What has made these projects so unique is that every stage of their development has come from the voluntary collaboration of people willing to contribute their time, talent and resources to make something really special.
Although the movie is independent and without funding, it is rich in the diversity and abilities that everyone has so generously brought to the table.
The first movie was regarded as a type of dress rehearsal to test capabilities, but this forthcoming movie is being produced with the intention of public release and an obvious desire that it be successfully televised.
Its purpose is as an encouragement to the creative story-tellers, story-holders and story-makers out there that are waiting for an opportunity.
The bigger picture of what is being done is a desire to create a small film school in the town- a creative outlet for sharing important historical or even fictional stories in a meaningful way.
The second purpose is both a shout out and a heads-up that over the June/July winter school holidays, people will be coming from far and wide to descend upon Narrandera once again for an amazing movie shooting experience.
The film’s proponents are looking for assistance in set design and carpentry for people who are interested (text 0413207703 to indicate your interest).
Tim wants to hear from creative story-tellers, story-holders and story-makers out there that are waiting for an opportunity.
“Here it is on your doorstep. The bigger picture of what is being done here is a desire to create a small film school in Narrandera – creative outlet for sharing important historical or even fictional stories in a meaningful way,” he said.
“People will be coming from far and wide to descend upon Narrandera once again for this amazing movie shooting experience. We feel both excited and privileged to return and our hope is that with your blessing we will capture the very best of the Wiradjuri Riverina community and people.
“I want to say thank you to all the many amazing people who are no longer spectators but participators in this movie. Standing together is powerful, it is humbling and it is precious. Thank you,” saId Tim.
This article appeared in the Narrandera Argus, 27 April 2023.