Keeping the rabbits out on the big screen

Telstra are seeking public funding to make a movie featuring the iconic father and son from their BigPond commercials.

Keep the rabbits out – it’s one of the famous lines in Australian advertising, the line an Australian father gives his son as the reason why China built the Great Wall.

The iconic partnership between the father and son has formed the basis of one of the most successful advertising campaigns in Australia, with other ads highlighting things like road trips and parent and teacher meetings. But the script for the upcoming movie is set to pitch things to a whole new level, with Daniel, the son, using the Internet to look for a wife for Patrick, the father.

Production company Working Dog, who created Australian hits like The Dish and The Castle, have been approached to work on the script along with other unnamed companies.

Some independent producers have criticised the approach, saying companies the size of Telstra shouldn’t resort to government funding for marketing activities.

But Telstra have gained support from an unlikely source in Geoff Brown, executive director of the Screen Producers Association of Australia, an independent body of producers.

“It’s appropriate for a corporate on that level to fund these things from their own resources,” said Brown.

The father and son campaign is something worth keeping alive though. According to BigPond, Chinese guides at the Great Wall now expect questions about rabbits from Australians.

Source: The Australian

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