Last week … manic ! Flight to Aurukun with indigenous leader Noel Pearson, another long day flying back to Aurukun and on to Pormpuraaw and Doomadgee Cape York Peninsula with Bob Katter … and in between following ‘Yes’ campaign director Dean Parkin all around Cairns.
As the ‘Indigenous Voice to Parliament’ referendum draws ever closer, campaigning is in full swing … and there has been regular arrivals of ‘campaigners’ from ‘down south’ flocking to the Far North (and more turning up later on this week.)
Pearson’s visit to Aurukun and Parkin’s in Cairns were covered for ‘The Australian’ (including a nice page 1) … and Katter in an epic three destination Cape York flights saga, was for Bob’s campaign.
So gratified to be a part of the documentary film “The Cape” recently released on Stan.
The doco tells in stark graphic detail the events surrounding the disappearance of Queensland fisherman Bevin Simmonds and his ten year old son Brad whilst checking shark nets off the west coast of Cape York Peninsula in 2003 … and the subsequent investigations, eventual murder charges and 2005 trial of rival fisher Michael Gater (who was having an affair with Bevin’s wife Cathy) and Gater’s mother Joan.
‘The Cape’ story was an original concept of friend and former journalist colleague Peter Michael … and also features a disturbing but fascinating number of gritty Cape character interviewees who knew the Gator, Simmonds and Ward families … alongside some wonderfully shot scenes of Cape York, the Gulf and the Great Barrier Reef.
Produced by veteran war correspondent Michael Ware and former news magazine exec Justine A Rosenthal, ‘The Cape’ is evocatively filmed and beautifully put together … and also contains over thirty of my images of the stories main protagonists, used to great effect full screen. All of my images were made during the two week Supreme Court trial in Cairns and portray murder accused pair Michael Gater and his mother Joan Gater, Bevin and Brad’s wife and mother Cathy … and many other members of the Gater and Ward clan’s who attended the proceedings.
Just the ‘looks’ in the photographs I made there still send chills …
The show … available to Stan subscribers here … has received rave reviews. (For those not Stan subscribed the ‘trailer’ is here.)
Entertainment website MamaMia writes, “The new Stan Original Documentary Revealed: The Cape is one of the most gripping and emotionally charged documentaries of the year“. TV Blackbox put it this way … “The Cape” is the story of rival fishing families who built empires amongst the twisted mangroves in Far North Queensland. The isolation, an all-consuming sexual obsession and a series of small choices leads to a suspected double murder of Brad and Bevin Simmonds. Emmy® Award-nominated filmmakers, Michael Ware and Justine A. Rosenthal take us on a journey into Australia’s Deep North and the human psyche to uncover what we’re capable of when our humanity is stripped bare in this fascinating portrayal of an insular and isolated community.”