You learn something new every day. Today I learned they have books in Australia; I knew they had movies (thanks to the wonderful Ozploitation documentary Not Quite Hollywood), but I didn’t know that penal colony had print. What a world!

One of the most popular book series in Australia – so big that it’s taught in schools – is known as the Tomorrow series, named after the first book (of seven), Tomorrow, When the War Began. The book is about a group of kids who have to battle an (unnamed) army that invades Australia. Yes, it sounds a lot like Red Dawn, which is being remade right now. Stuart Beattie, who is making his directorial debut with this film, wants you to know there’s a difference.

“I don’t want to make ‘Red Dawn,’ “ said Beattie. “Do you
remember when ‘The Full Monty’ and ‘Striptease’ were coming out
together? They came out within months as the exact same premise —
the parent strips for money so they can see their kid. But
completely different. One was all flash and rockin’ body, and the
other was completely the opposite, of total insecurity about
getting up onstage. We’re more like the ‘Full Monty’

Ouch. Nobody even remembers Striptease.

Beattie’s also writing the movie; the guy has one of the spottier filmographies, so I’m not that psyched. After doing some research on the Tomorrow novels I have to say that they strike me as rather generic, also making me not that psyched.

What is cool, as Beattie notes, is that this will be one of the first truly Australian action films in a long time. After seeing Not Quite Hollywood I have to root for the Down Under team at least a little.