Kriv Stenders to direct Go-Betweens documentary Right Here

Director Kriv Stenders, left, and producer Nelson Woss on the set of Blue Dog in Karratha. Photo: David Darcy The Go-Betweens c1988: (l-r) John Willsteed, Grant McLennan, Lindy Morrison, Robert Forster, Amanda Brown. Photo: Supplied
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The busiest man in Australian film and television just got busier, with news that Kriv Stenders will follow his Red Dog sequel with a documentary on indie music darlings The Go-Betweens.

The feature-length doc, Right Here, will premiere at next year’s Sydney Film Festival.

Stenders, who is, like the band, a native of Brisbane, said the project had been “four decades in the making”.

“This is very much a dream project for me, as The Go-Betweens and their music have been a fundamental part of my life since I was 15 years old,” he said.

“To be able to tell and share their epic story and to have original members onboard with me is a thrill beyond definition.”

Stenders directed several music clips for the band, including one for their biggest hit, 1988’s Streets of Your Town. Incidentally, that song can currently be heard on ABC-TV as the theme music for the architectural history show of the same name presented by Tim Ross.

The Go-Betweens were formed in 1977 by Queensland University students Robert Forster and Grant McLennan, and were soon joined by Lindy Morrison on drums. Various others came and went over the years, but those three remained constants until the band broke up in late 1989, after six critically acclaimed but commercially disappointing albums.

In 2000, Forster and McLennan reformed the band, without Morrison and violinist-vocalist Amanda Brown, who had joined the band after its third album. They released three more albums before McLennan died in 2006, aged 48.

Robert Forster recently released a memoir, Grant & I, that detailed the evolution of the band, and especially his relationship with McLennan. He recently spoke to Fairfax about his continuing sense of loss over the death of his friend and artistic collaborator.

Of the documentary, Forster said: “Kriv Stenders is an artist in film and I am sure he will tell the story of The Go-Betweens with flair and precision.”

The question, though, is how will he find the time to do so?

Since the release of Red Dog in 2011, Stenders has barely stood still. Last year his genre thriller Kill Me Three Times was released, along with the four-part SBS drama The Principal.

In the past 12 months he has directed episodes of US sci-fi series Hunters, Australian TV series A Place to Call Home and Doctor Doctor, the sequel Red Dog: True Blue, which is due in cinemas on Boxing Day, and the dramatic feature Australia Day.

He is also now working on a two-part TV adaptation of Wake in Fright, due to screen on Ten in 2017.

Karl Quinn is on facebook at karlquinnjournalist and on twitter @karlkwin

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