Friday, 20 February 2015

A Story to Empower and Inspire

Several weeks ago my friend Claudia invited me to a very special afternoon tea. An old friend of hers, Jane Castle, an accomplished Australian cinematographer and filmmaker, was looking for financial support for the making of a new documentary. We drank tea and a little bubbly, ate some of Claudia's  delicious home made cake and sat down to watch the trailer for the documentary.
When the lights came up we were all speechless and in tears.
Jane's mother Lilias Fraser was also a talented cinematographer. This documentary is about Lilias. It is a moving story of a woman who made 40 films despite enormous personal challenges at a time when filmmaking was not a "suitable job for a woman". Her best known work may well be Women of the Iron Frontier, a documentary that examined the lives of railwaymen's wives. In many ways the struggles of the women in this and many of her documentaries mirrored the struggles of her own life.
Lilias was a champion of women's rights and indigenous rights and, despite her own troubles with domestic violence and eventually alcoholism, her works were always optimistic. Her life ended in tragedy.

Lilias Fraser and Jane Castles during the filming of Lilias'
acclaimed documentary "Women of the Iron Frontier"
Lilias' story has the potential to empower women - women in situations of domestic violence and abuse, women whose career aspirations have been stymied by social and cultural expectations and women everywhere who struggle with adversity.
Film Australia have promised Jane and her producer Pat Fiske $235,000 to make the film but in order to get the grant they must raise $100,000 themselves.
If you would like to know more about it or to support the making of this potentially life changing documentary CLICK HERE to go to the Documentary Australia Foundation website.

No comments: