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Release Date: December 2, 2011 (limited)
Studio: IFC Films
Director: Julia Leigh
Screenwriter: Julia Leigh
Starring: Emily Browning, Michael Dorman, Mirrah Foulkes, Rachael Blake
Genre: Drama
MPAA Rating: R



Julia Leigh (Director and Screenplay)

Julia Leigh comes to film having established herself as a leading contemporary novelist.

Her first novel The Hunter (1999) was internationally shortlisted for many prizes and won a Betty Trask Award (UK), the Prix de L’Astrolabe Etonnants Voyageurs (France), and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. She was named a Sydney Morning Herald Young Novelist of the Year (Australia) and “one of 21 writers for the 21st century” by The Observer (UK). Don DeLillo described it as ‘a strong and hypnotic piece of writing’. A film based on the novel, directed by Daniel Nettheim, written by Alice Addison and starring Willem Dafoe, is in post-production.

Her novella Disquiet (2008) won the Encore Award (UK), was a France Culture/Télérama rentrée selection (France), was an LA Times Favourite Book, a Kirkus Best Book of the Year (US) and No.7 on Entertainment Weekly (US)’s Top Ten Books of the Year. Its many shortlistings include the Adelaide Festival Fiction Award, the NSW Premier’s Prize and the West Australian Premier’s Book Award (Australia). She was a participant in the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, working with Toni Morrison, Nobel Laureate, who said of Disquiet that ‘Julia Leigh is a sorceress. Her deft prose casts a spell of serene control while the earth quakes underfoot.’

Her work is published in 7 languages.

In 2008 the script for Sleeping Beauty landed on the Hollywood ‘Black List’ and she was named one of 25 New Faces of independent cinema by Filmmaker Magazine (US).

She was born in 1970, Australia. She received a Bachelor of Arts majoring in philosophy and a Bachelor of Laws, both from the University of Sydney. In 1995 she was admitted to the Supreme Court of NSW as a Legal Practitioner – though never practised. In 2009 she received a PhD in English from the University of Adelaide.

She was born in 1970, Australia. She received a Bachelor of Arts majoring in philosophy and a Bachelor of Laws, both from the University of Sydney. In 1995 she was admitted to the Supreme Court of NSW as a Legal Practitioner – though never practised. In 2009 she received a PhD in English from the University of Adelaide.

Jessica Brentnall (Producer)

Jessica is an Australian Film Institute Award-winning producer. Jessica started her career in fashion at Vogue Australia and made the transition to film working on Rabbit Proof Fence. Her most recent credit as producer was the animated short film, The Cat Piano, which was shortlisted for an Academy Award in 2010. Jessica’s production company, Magic Films, is developing a variety of film and television projects, including The Magician with HBO. Sleeping Beauty is Jessica’s first feature film as producer.

Tim White (Executive Producer)

Tim White has produced or executive produced 30 films in Australia and New Zealand.

His Australian titles include Malcolm, which won the Australian Film Institute (AFI) Award for best film in 1986, The Big Steal, Death in Brunswick, Angel Baby (AFI best film in 1995), Oscar and Lucinda and Two Hands (AFI best film in 1999). Tim’s New Zealand titles include Broken English, No. 2 and Out of the Blue. In 1997 Tim was appointed chief executive of Fox Icon, a joint venture between 20th Century Fox and Mel Gibson’s Icon Entertainment. From 2000 to 2004 he headed Working Title Australia and under this banner produced Gettin’ Square and was executive producer on Ned Kelly. He now runs his own production company, Southern Light Films, and increasingly works on international projects. Recent examples include the UK/Australian co-production The Boys Are Back, the Korean/ US film Warrior’s Way and the adaptation of Mr. Pip being directed by Andrew Adamson.

Geoffrey Simpson ACS (Director of Photography)

Geoffrey Simpson is one of Australia’s most experienced cinematographers. He was crowned Cinematographer of the Year by his peers at the Australian Cinematographers Society in 1986 for Playing Beatie Bow and 21 years later won the organisation’s Golden Tripod for Romulus, My Father. He has been behind the camera on about 40 dramas, including Shine and Oscar and Lucinda, which earned him Australian Film Institute Awards for cinematography in 1996 and 1998 respectively. He has worked on films all over the world including Under The Tuscan Sun in Italy, Fried Green Tomatoes, Little Women and Green Card in the US; The Navigator: A Mediaeval Odyssey in New Zealand; Some Mother’s Son in Ireland; and most recently, The Dragon Pearl in China.

Annie Beauchamp (Production Designer)

Sleeping Beauty is Annie Beauchamp’s third feature as a production designer. Most recently she worked on Disgrace which was principally filmed in South Africa and won an award from critics at the Toronto International Film Festival. She has been art director on many films and was on the team that won acclaim from the Art Directors Guild of America for its work on Baz Luhrmann’s box office hit Moulin Rouge ! She has been on films with other high-profile directors too including Alex Proyas (on Garage Days ) and Phillip Noyce ( The Quiet American ). She was also art director on The Well, which was in official selection at the Cannes Film Festival in 1998. She works on a broad range of jobs, including television commercials and restaurant interiors.

Nick Meyers ASE (Editor)

Nick Meyers won IF Awards for the feature films The Bank and Balibo in 2001 and 2009 respectively, and is acknowledged for his major contribution to the critical hit The Boys. He also edited Three Dollars and was a consultant on the highly acclaimed Ten Canoes. He works on documentary as well as drama and recent credits include Mrs Carey’s Concert, which opens the 2011 Adelaide Film Festival, and Rampage and The Miscreants of Taliwood, both directed by George Gittoes.

Sam Petty (Sound Designer)

Sam Petty’s first feature as a sound designer was The Boys in 1996 and many of his collaborators were fellow graduates from the Australian Film, Television & Radio School, including director Rowan Woods and producer Robert Connolly. He has worked on dozens of projects since including Somersault, Little Fish and the documentary Global Haywire, each of which won Australian Film Institute Awards for best sound. He also edited Global Haywire, directed by his father, the renowned animator Bruce Petty. Somersault also earned Petty junior an Australian Screen Sound Guild Award and Little Fish an IF Award. He also won IF Awards for The Square and Balibo. He has worked with Neil Armfield, George Ogilvie and other admired directors in theatre, and on many shorts including the Oscar-nominated Miracle Fish.

Ben Frost (Composer)

Ben Frost’s albums include Steel Wound (2003), Theory of Machines (2007) and By The Throat (2009). He is known for the boldness and intensity of his festival performances and has collaborated with contemporary dance companies Chunky Move and the Icelandic Dance Company. He has worked with artists as diverse as Björk, Stars Like Fleas, Tim Hecker, Amiina, Christian Fennesz, Jóhann Jóhannsson and Wildbirds & Peacedrums and Bora Yoon, but his most regular collaborator is electronic composer and producer Valgeir Sigurðsson from Greenhouse Studios in Reykjavík. Frost is Australian born but based in Iceland. His most recent film project was In Her Skin.

Transmission Films (Australian Distributor)

Transmission Films is a Sydney based feature film acquisitions and distribution company. Joint Managing Directors Richard Payten and Andrew Mackie previously ran Dendy Films for six years before launching Transmission Films in partnership with Paramount. Together, Transmission and Paramount collaborate on acquisitions, with Transmission overseeing the creative marketing and Paramount bringing their muscle and expertise to all stages of release. Prior to Transmission Richard and Andrew released and acquired over 100 films, grossing more than $125m box office in Australia and New Zealand, earning 23 Oscar nominations, 3 Palme d’Ors and 150 AFI Award nominations. Transmission also has a sister company, Emile Sherman and Iain Canning’s production entity See-Saw Films, producers of the Academy Award winning, The King’s Speech.


Directed by
Julia Leigh

Screenplay by
Julia Leigh

Produced by

Jessica Brentnall .... producer
Sasha Burrows .... associate producer
Jamie Hilton .... executive producer
Michelle Russell .... line producer
Timothy White .... executive producer

Original Music by
Ben Frost

Cinematography by
Geoffrey Simpson

Film Editing by
Nick Meyers

Casting by
Nikki Barrett

Production Design by
Annie Beauchamp

Art Direction by
Jocelyn Thomas

Set Decoration by
Lisa Thompson

Costume Design by
Shareen Beringer

Assistant Director
Breeze Callahan .... third assistant director
Dimitri Ellerington .... first assistant director

Art Department
Henry Downes .... art runner
Greg Hajdu .... construction coordinator
Ross Perkin .... storyboard artist

Sound Department
Yulia Akerholt .... dialogue editor
Paradox Delilah .... sound assistant
Les Fiddess .... foley artist
Sam Hayward .... re-recording engineer
Robert Mackenzie .... sound re-recording mixer
Gerry Nucifora .... boom operator
Ben Osmo .... sound recordist
Martin Oswin .... foley mixer
Sam Petty .... sound designer
Brooke Trezise .... sound effects editor

Visual Effects by
Matthew T. Griffin .... digital compositor
James Rogers .... visual effects supervisor

Camera and Electrical Department
Sian Bates .... second assistant camera
Sian Bates .... video split operator
Andrew Johnson .... steadicam operator
Wendy McDougall .... still photographer
Matthew Spowart .... second assistant "a" camera

Casting Department
Danny Long .... casting associate
Diana Ward .... extras casting

Costume and Wardrobe Department
Elly Kamal .... costume supervisor
Dan Owen .... assistant costume stand-by
Christina Validakis .... costume buyer

Editorial Department
Brad Dunn .... digital conform editor
Olivier Fontenay .... colorist
Katherine Heads .... digital intermediate producer
Annabelle Johnson .... assistant editor

Other crew
Alex Cardy .... assistant to producer
Michael Horvath .... production secretary
Louise McNicholl .... location manager
Reza Mokhtar .... caterer
Patrick Rohr .... production runner
Cassandra Simpson .... production coordinator
Nathan Smith .... I/O operations liaison
Lucy Vorst .... production accountant
Diana Ward .... assistant to director


Studio photos, notes and videos © 2011 Screen Australia, Magic Films and IFC Films