Exclusive Clip! Cerulean Blue

Cinema Australia Original Content:

Jack Michel and Senie Priti in Cerulean Blue.

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by Matthew Eeles

Cerulean Blue will celebrate its world premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival next month.

Writer, producer and director Adrian Ortega says the idea for his engaging two-hander came directly from his own personal experiences dealing with heartache and regret in his early twenties.

“I based Alex’s character a lot off myself and developed the story arc over a ‘what if’ situation I constantly asked myself during this period,” Ortega tells Cinema Australia. “I also wanted to make an Australian film that challenged typical gender clichés and something as a response to the methodical romantic-road-movie we’ve all seen a million times before.”

Cerulean Blue is impressively performed by its two leads Jack Michel (All Night Gaming) who plays Alex, a pessimist who travels to Melbourne in search of a lost love and Senie Priti (The Doctor Blake Mysteries: Family Portrait) as Lily, an optimist who Alex meets along the way.

“Jack and Senie were incredible to work with,” said Ortega. “The most enjoyable time I had with them during rehearsals was when we were workshopping the characters and they were delving deep and really becoming them for the first time.”

Jack was the only person who auditioned for Alex who was able to bring a natural authenticity to the performance, playing someone with obsessive-compulsive disorder without playing a caricature while Senie was able to bring Lily’s overzealous personality to a realistic and believable level and gave her such a level of emotional vulnerability, which Ortega didn’t expect from the character.

“They each knew each other before Cerulean Blue which gave them a natural chemistry that I felt was conveyed throughout the film. Jack actually recommended Senie to audition for Lily during his own audition process.”

Typical for an Australia independent feature film , Cerulean Blue was made on such a low budget that anything and everything was a challenge during the shoot according to Ortega.

“The most challenging time was when I was forced to find a new location for a pivotal scene not once, but twice during production, due to weather and sound issues that were affecting the mood for the scene,” says Ortega. “It was a very stressful last-minute thing I had to do and while juggling all the other elements of making a film, it didn’t help ease any stress.”

Ortega ended up shooting that particular scene for a third time on a pick-up shooting day three months after principal photography ended.

When it comes to the film’s world premiere, Ortega hopes that audiences are able to sympathise with a character like Alex and understand his point of view throughout the film

“It isn’t a typically normal perspective, and more of a warped view of the world perhaps, but it’s something that people with his type of persona struggle with daily,” Ortega said. “I hope that audiences are entertained and are excited to see something new and fresh to come out of Australia.”

Cerulean Blue will screen at the Melbourne International Film Festival on Sunday, 11 August and Tuesday, 13 August. You can find further details here.

In the meantime, Cinema Australia readers have been treated to this exclusive clip from the film.

Help us continue to bring you more Australian film coverage by making a donation to Cinema Australia below. 

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