28 April 2013
| 8.2/10 |
| Marta Dusseldorp
Frankie J. Holden
Logie Award for Most Outstanding Drama Series
Foxtel, Seven Network, SoHo
Marta Dusseldorp, Noni Hazlehurst, Brett Climo, David Berry, Arianwen Parkes‑Lockwood
A Place to Call Home is an Australian television drama series that debuted on the Seven Network on Sunday 28 April 2013. Set in rural New South Wales in the period following the Second World War, it follows Sarah Adams (Marta Dusseldorp), who has returned to Australia after twenty years abroad to start a new life and ends up clashing with wealthy matriarch Elizabeth Bligh (Noni Hazlehurst). The main cast also consists of Brett Climo (George Bligh), Craig Hall (Dr. Jack Duncan), David Berry (James Bligh), Abby Earl (Anna Poletti), Arianwen Parkes-Lockwood (Olivia Bligh), Aldo Mignone (Gino Poletti), Sara Wiseman (Carolyn Bligh), Jenni Baird as (Regina Bligh) and Frankie J. Holden (Roy Briggs).
It was created by Bevan Lee and has been described as a "compelling melodrama about love and loss set against the social change of the 1950s".
The series was threatened with cancellation at the end of its second season, but as of February 2017, four seasons have been aired and a fifth season is in production. The series has gained loyal followings in international distribution as well as in its home country.
A Place to Call Home (TV series) Wikipedia
Development for A Place to Call Home began after Bevan Lee completed his "domestic trilogy" (Always Greener, Packed to the Rafters and Winners & Losers). He took inspiration from film director Douglas Sirk's 1950s films such as Written on the Wind (1956) and All That Heaven Allows (1955). Lee told The Age that he wanted to create a romance-driven melodrama based in the 1950s because people's lives in the present are "relatively bland". He said: "At the end of the day, conflict is drama and we live in relatively conflict-free society. I had to go to a place where there was pain and damage and hurt; after the war there was." The script is co-written by Lee and Trent Atkinson.
Noni Hazlehurst (Elizabeth Bligh) was the first cast member to be announced for A Place to Call Home, on 18 June 2012. Marta Dusseldorp (Sarah Adams), Brett Climo (George Bligh) and Frankie J. Holden (Roy Briggs) were announced a month later, with Dusseldorp leading the overall cast. Newcomers David Berry (James Bligh), Arianwen Parkes-Lockwood (Olivia Bligh), Abby Earl (Anna Bligh) and Aldo Mignone (Gino Poletti), made up the rest of the main cast.
A Place to Call Home is primarily set in both the fictional estate "Ash Park" and the nearby fictional town of "Inverness" in country New South Wales. Camden and the Southern Highlands in New South Wales serves as the backdrop for Inverness. Ash Park is actually Camelot, a heritage-listed property located at Kirkham, on the outskirts of Camden. Sydney, the capital city of New South Wales, is a third location where major events occur, but most city scenes are filmed indoors, aside from some establishing shots such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge (the yet-to-be-built Sydney Opera House is carefully edited out of the shots).
Filming for the first season began on 9 July 2012 and concluded on 12 December 2012. Season one was shot on a Sony F65 camera, becoming the first Australian television production to do so.
In June 2013, Erin McWhirter from TV Week announced that A Place to Call Home had been renewed for another season. Abby Earl told McWhirter, "We're locked in pre-production in August and then we start filming in September, so there's plenty of time for me to get back in Anna's shoes." The second season started on 11 May 2014 and concluded on 13 July 2014.
TV Week confirmed that a third season had been commissioned. However, in June 2014, the magazine reported that Channel Seven had declined the option to renew the series, and that the cast and crew had been told that they would not be required for a third season.
On 15 October 2014, it was announced that Foxtel had finalised a deal with Channel Seven that would see a third season written by Bevan Lee, produced by Seven Productions, but aired on Foxtel. On 25 October 2014, The Daily Telegraph announced that A Place to Call Home was renewed for another two seasons and would return in late 2015, airing on Foxtel channel, SoHo. It was also announced that all the original cast & crew members would return.
On 16 August 2015 it was announced via the official Facebook page that Season 3 would premiere on Sunday 27 September 2015 at 8:30pm on SoHo. Season 4 premiered on Foxtel's Showcase channel on Sunday 11 September 2016.
Season 5 was announced by Foxtel on 16 November 2016. The timeline of Season 5 will skip ahead from 1954 to the year 1958. A Place to Call Home will resume filming in February 2017.Marta Dusseldorp as Sarah Adams, who despite a strictly religious Catholic upbringing, had moved to Paris to be with the man she loved and to adopt his Jewish faith. However, a new life awaits her when she comes to work for the local hospital near the Bligh family, whom she met while serving as a nurse on the ship taking them all back to Australia from Europe. Later, she is astonished to hear a report that her husband is still alive following World War II, and her life again spins into troubled times.
Noni Hazlehurst as Elizabeth Bligh, the headstrong and stubborn matriarch of the Bligh family. She is at first rude and cruel to Sarah, but she grudgingly mellows over time. Later in the series, she leaves for Sydney to live with her daughter Carolyn, and to become a better person.
Brett Climo as Elizabeth's son, George Bligh, a good-hearted man who takes Sarah under his protection and gradually falls in love with her. He is widower of Elaine; at the beginning of the series, he appears to be father to James and Anna; eventually it emerges that Anna is actually a secret child of his sister Carolyn and their friend Jack, taken in by George and Elaine to spare Carolyn any scandal. His worst flaw may be his trust in people who seek to take advantage of him.
Craig Hall as Jack Duncan, the secret past lover of Carolyn, who now faces many challenges in his work as a doctor in a hospital run by the Bligh family. He is a genuine person despite his personal problems and would do anything to help others.
David Berry as James Bligh, the only son of George and Elaine, who grows up unaware of his "sister" Anna's true background. He marries Olivia, but is tormented by the realisation that he is gay, and tries to commit suicide. He later feels betrayed when his wife has an affair, but returns to Ash Park to live for his young son.
Arianwen Parkes-Lockwood as Olivia Bligh, James' wife, a newlywed from England at the start of the series. She develops anger toward James for his indifference to her desperate need for affection, but does try to come to terms with his "condition".
Abby Earl as Anna Bligh (later Poletti), the secret child of Carolyn and Jack, who was raised believing she was daughter of George and Elaine. Anna marries a local farmer, Gino, after rebelling against the Bligh family. However the marriage faces difficulties when Gino goes into debt, and his attempts to expand the farm fail.
Aldo Mignone as Gino Poletti, the young, handsome Italian farmer who has set Anna's heart on fire. He has a real passion for farming and trying to please everybody, but his ambitious business decisions are not very successful.
Sara Wiseman as Carolyn Bligh. Much like her secret daughter Anna, Carolyn was the rebel child of her generation. For a long time, she gave up on her relationship with the Bligh family, and has had little contact for years. Once her secret is revealed, she is reunited with her long-separated daughter Anna and they develop an even closer relationship than before. Later on Carolyn works for Sir Richard Bennett, encountering new problems.
Frankie J. Holden as Roy Briggs, a kindly old farmer who lives alone at the series start. He is very generous toward Sarah from the time she arrives in town, eventually offering her a refuge in his small home. They develop an easy, informal, mutually-supportive friendship.
Ben Winspear as Doctor Rene Nordmann, the long-lost first love and husband of Sarah Adams. First seen only in flashback, Rene had been arrested by the Nazi occupiers of Paris, and had disappeared without a trace. Later, when Sarah is amazed to learn that he is still alive, she travels to Paris to rescue him from the deep psychological damage caused by his long ordeal of imprisonment and torture. Rene has great difficulty adjusting to normal life, and still seems to carry his imprisonment within him.
Jenni Baird as Regina Standish, the widowed, formerly wealthy and still money-hungry sister of George's late wife, Elaine. Regina is the opposite of who Elaine had been: cold, bitter, and scheming, she despises Jews and openly displays religious intolerance toward Sarah. Regina has now set her sights on the widower George's inheritance, and would take extreme actions to achieve her goals regardless of anyone she sees as an obstacle.
Dominic Allburn as Harry Polson, the homosexual brother of Amy. He has a brief romantic involvement with James, but when much of the village learns of Harry's true nature he leaves Inverness for a new life elsewhere. Later, when he returns after having been severely beaten, Sarah helps him to settle back in to a more stable life at Inverness.
Tim Draxl as Doctor Henry Fox, the doctor who helps to save George's life after he is shot. Henry then goes on to befriend James, and they realize their mutual attraction to each other is stronger than mere friendship. Henry falls under the devious control of Regina, when she blackmails him into supplying her with morphine for her addiction.
Matt Levett as Andrew Swanson, a somewhat entitled heir apparent who tries to to win the hand of Anna Bligh.
Deborah Kennedy as Doris Collins, the most widely-known member of the Inverness village, who seems omnipresent on her bicycle. Although she means well, her gossiping ways can sometimes make her seem rude and intrusive. Sarah dislikes her at first, but as time goes on, finds her helpful as someone who always knows who has done what in the village.
Heather Mitchell as Prudence Swanson, the wealthy friend of Elizabeth. Prudence socializes with Elizabeth whenever she comes to visit Sydney. As a member of Sydney's upper class, she is very aristocratic and looks down her nose at Sarah when she arrives for a garden party.
Judi Farr as Peg Maloney, the aunt of Sarah Adams, who writes to her frequently from her home in Sydney. She and Sarah have grown very close, and when Sarah later decides to take a difficult action, she asks Peg for help.
Dina Panozzo as Carla Poletti, the mother of Gino. She is very critical of the relationship with Anna and her son, saying that it will never work because she is not Catholic. But when George accedes, she does so as well.
Krew Boylan and then Amy Mathews as Amy Polson, the maid of the Bligh household. When Regina suspects that James is gay she manipulates Amy into spying for her, which eventually forces Elizabeth to fire Amy with great sorrow.
Angelo D'Angelo as Amo Poletti, the father of Gino
Jacinta Acevski as Alma Grey
Scott Grimley as Norman Parker (driver)
Rick Donald as Lloyd Ellis-Parker, a talented portrait artist on temporary assignment, who seems to offer Olivia the romantic affection she desperately craves.
Michael Sheasby as Bert Ford, a local yobbo who always seems to be looking for a fight. His suspicion of outsiders and religious intolerance make Sarah a natural target, as are the Italian Poletti family. Bert disappears under mysterious circumstances, but his unknown fate continues to haunt his former victims.
Mark Lee as Sir Richard Bennett, a rich and powerful, but unprincipled owner of a major city newspaper. He is used to taking whatever he wishes to possess, including the people around him.
Robert Coleby as Douglas Goddard, a retiree who now runs a club for Australian war veterans.
When Seven Network revealed its new television series lineup for 2012, A Place to Call Home was mentioned alongside other titles. Seven Network's Angus Ross said that it would potentially premiere in late 2012, but wouldn't rush the show to air by a certain date unless "casting and other elements" were right. The first season of A Place to Call Home consisted of thirteen episodes. The pilot episode was originally broadcast on 28 April 2013, in the 8:30 pm time slot (previously occupied by Downton Abbey).Australian Cinematographers Society Awards
Equity Ensemble Awards
Shortly after airing in Australia A Place to Call Home started broadcasting on TV One in New Zealand in the Sundays 8.30pm slot, moving later to 9.40 pm. The second-season finale was aired on 26 October 2014.
The first season began airing in Denmark on DR1 in March 2014. The show airs under the Danish title En Ny Begyndelse, which roughly translates to A New Beginning. In other Nordic countries the show has been aired in Finland by the national broadcasting company's TV channel Yle TV1. The show airs under the Finnish title Kotiin takaisin, which roughly translates to Back to home.
Series one and two began airing on BBC2 in the United Kingdom on 17 November 2014, series three on 25 February 2016 and series four on 13 February 2017.
The show also airs in Israel on Yes Drama under the title מקום בלב, which translates to A Place in the Heart.
In the Netherlands the series airs too on MAX (npo2).
The first four seasons are available for streaming in the US on Acorn TV. They also air on select PBS stations.
In Croatia the show airs on HRT under the title Mjesto koje zovem dom, which translates to A Place That I Call Home.