Angelina Jolie is heading to Australia to shoot her second film as director, it was confirmed, after the film-maker visited the country in mid-September to scout locations for Unbroken, the story of the second world war airman Louis Zamperini.
The New South Wales deputy premier, Andrew Stoner, made an announcement that the state had fought to bring the production to Australia, saying, “This demonstrates the world class standards of our film production industry.” He added: “Securing production of Unbroken in NSW will inject millions of dollars into the state’s economy and is expected to create more than 300 jobs for NSW-based crew alone, and more for cast and extras.”
Unbroken is based on Laura Hillenbrand’s 2010 novel Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, which outlines the experiences of Zamperini, a former athlete who represented the US in the 1936 Olympics and who then survived a crash in the Pacific during combat with Japan. He was held in a prisoner of war camp for three years before returning to the US at the end of the war.
Jolie secured the writing service of the Coen brothers on the project, a follow-up to her directorial debut In the Land of Blood and Honey. She has also cast the former Skins star Jack O’Connell in the lead role.
Jolie visited NSW in early September, triggering a wave of publicity and local excitement.