WHEN the Australian his-
torian, Mr. C. H. Bertie, of the Mitchell Library, visit- ed Pagewood Studios, Sydney, recently, he confessed his hope that some Australian film company would one day make a film surrounding the discov- ery of gold and its effect on early Australian life. "It covers the period of our strug- gle for nationhood and builds up to the gripping story of the Eureka Stockade," he said.
"IF only we could make that picture,"
Mr. Bertie said. "The masses of mov- ing men. and women too, marching on- wards to discover their Eldorado, with men leaving ships and men leaving ploughs, with women following their men into the dangers of thirst, hunger, and attacks by blacks and bushrangers, is the first real story of Australian pioneering and adventurous development.
To secure authenticity of the period of 100 years ago in Sydney, Argosy Films got thc advice of Mr. Bertie for the colonial scene in the new Australian film "That Certain Something." This is a I modern comedy-dramn, but included in
it are scenes which depict the interior of
a residence in Sydney in the '40's of last century. For this reason Mr. Bertie's knowledge was requested to provide the finer points of dressing, furniture, and the general setting.
Mr. W. Baker, the art director of Ar- gosy, set out on a hunt for period fur- nishings and genuine "pieces were se- cured from all over Sydney for the
scenes to be taken.
When Mr. Bertie visited Pagewood Studios to state whether thc setting was historically correct, he said Mr. Baker had done a good job. Later on Mr. Bertie discovered that there was only one slip in thc correctness of historical detail, and that was in one set of but- tons used by the soldiers of the New South Wales Corps of the time. This regiment was the 65th. which arrived in New South Wales in 1846. This minor detail was soon corrected;
"The setting was built up on an art- ist's water-colour drawing of the day, _ and is really an . amalgamation of the drawing rooms of two houses of the pe- riod," said ' Mr. Bertie. He went
on to point out that this amalgamation of tho two houses had to be carried out due to the action of the scenes in the film.
Mr. Baker, the art director, has been in Australia only a short time, and he states that his research into the colonial settings has been a refreshing and in- teresting change after his work in Eng- lish studios. Prior to coming to Aus- tralia, he did much of the designing and supervision of New Zealand's Centennial Exhibition at Wellington.
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1 DIRECTOR CLARENCE BAD
GER, making "That Certain Something," was confronted with a prob- lem of securing an Australian bush type for the picture. . He wanted a man whose face was lined by the hot sun and wind of the Australian outback, and he want- ed him to bo thc real thing. Mr. Badger had interviewed dozens of applicants for the part and had not found his man, when it was suggested to him that the very man he required was in Sydney. The man was Francis Birtles, famous throughout Australia for his travel,and exploration in the Commonwealth over the past 30 years.
Mr. C. H. Bertie (left), Australian historian, discussing
with the film director, Mr. Clarence Badger, an early Col- onial scene for Argosy's new Australian film, "That Certain Something."
Francis Birtles first made himself known when he travelled around Aus- tralia on a bicycle many years ago. Later on, he went around it in nu old motor-car, and still later, in a modern caravan, tie is known in the Kimberleys, in thc Gulf country-, Central Australia, and the rugged Ant- helm Land of thc Northern Territory. In "That Certain Something" he plays the part of a bushman on a visit to the city, and staying at a large city hotel. After he had been around thc studio
for a few days,
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someone asked him did lie feel that he wanted to get back to the bush again, and this bushman who had been weathered by the strongest sun of the tropics, and had gone quietly
through cyclone and the dangers of thirst in the desert, said: "Yes, I'd like to get away from the heat of those lights in the studio."
QNE of George Formby's ear
, liest successes was in a motor-cycling comedy, "No Limit," which was written around the International Tourist Trophy races which used to bc held annually on the Isle of Man. Now Formby revives Iiis old love in "Spare .a Copper," in which he is a war reserve policeman. Tho film calls for much motor-cycling, anet includes not only speedway races but a "wall of death" sequence. Formby, who is an ardent motor-cyclist, will "cfo
Iiis stuff" in earnest in the film. John Paddy Carstairs direcls and Michael Bal- con is producer for Ealing Studios.
A notable figuro in tho determination of British production to carry on is John Corfield, of British National Films, who has announced a number of films for pro- duction, one of them in tho immediate future. Corfield and his fellow directors have decided that in spite of recent events British National are to continue produc- tion as heretofore.
First of the new programme has been launched already, and tentatively titled "This England." It is an ambitious epic of the English countryside, a dramatic history of the land. It will trace the drama behind the rustic scene, from the Norman Conquest, through the Armada and the times of Napoleon, down to the
imminent threats of 1940.
Directing this epic, which will probably be made in technicolour, is David Mac- donald, one ot the most successful and imaginative of the younger band of Bri- tish directors. The leading stars will be Emlyn Williams and John Clements, who will appear throughout the story in the roles of respectively a "gentleman farm-
er" and a labourer.
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"YOUNG PEOPLE," which may
be Shirley Temple's last pic- ture for 20th Century-Fox, is a musical comedy that utilises short musical num- bers from Shirley's earlier pictures as part of the story. She is shown growing up ns Ute adopted daughter of two vaude- ville actors. In order to give her a fair chance at an education, they retire and buy her a New England farm, but meet with coldness from the townspeople. After attempting to get along with them, thc trio decides to leave, but their heroism in a hurricane wins the hearts of the New Englanders. Jack Oakie and Charlotte Greenwood as the foster parents, Arleen Whelan, George Montgomery, and Kath- leen Howard top the cast. Five new songs by Mack Gordon and Harry War- ren, plus three from previous pictures constitute the melody side of the picture,