Acclaimed Australian writer/actor Brendan Cowell (The Slap, Love My Way) steps behind the camera for the first time to deliver a thrilling slice of Australian outlaw history. Written and directed by Cowell, The Outlaw Michael Howe but largely forgotten bushrangers and will premiere on Sunday 1 December at 8.30pm on ABC1.
'This is a real thrill for me and it seems fitting that my first television directing credit is one of Australia's lost stories. This is a complex, brutal and beautiful tale about a British outlaw and the two women he loved and the land he nearly conquered. I loved exploring the incredible locations Tasmania had to offer, and the opportunity to work with a world class team, to bring ABC1 this untold story" says Brendan Cowell. 

Producer Nial Fulton says "The Outlaw Michael Howe examines how a small group of outlaws pushed the colony to the brink of civil war. In Van Diemen's Land, the rule book had yet to be written and all sides recognised an opportunity to exert their absolute authority. In the darkest corner of the Empire, Michael Howe began a war that would last nearly fifteen years, fought between some of the most colourful characters in our nation's history."

Filmed on location in Tasmania and regional NSW and based upon surviving records from a brutal era in Australian history, the film gathers an ensemble of gifted, new-generation stars including Damon Herriman (The Lone Ranger, Justified) as Michael Howe, Mirrah Foulkes (Top of the Lake, Animal Kingdom), Rarriwuy Hick (Redfern Now) as well as a supporting cast including Matt Day, Darren Gilshenan, Pip Miller and Brendan Cowell. The film is beautifully shot by Simon Harding (The Hobbit, King Kong) and features a stunning score by Roger Mason, music by The Drones, with an original song recorded for the film by Sarah Blasko.

ABC Head of Factual Phil Craig says "The Outlaw Michael Howe is an astonishing film. A gifted writer, director and cast bring the past to life in all its dark complexity whilst also delivering an enthralling cinematic experience" 

CJZ's Creative Director, Michael Cordell says "The story of Michael Howe is one of the great untold sagas of Australian colonial history. It's a primal tale about power, survival and a taboo relationship between a white man and an Aboriginal woman. Brendan has done an extraordinary job as a first time director. We're proud to have been able to help Brendan and Nial in bringing this visceral tale to the screen." 

In Association with ABC TV, The Outlaw Michael Howe is an In Films / Cordell Jigsaw Zapruder production, with the assistance of Screen Australia: Making History, Screen New South Wales Regional Film Fund and Screen Tasmania. Produced by In Films and Cordell Jigsaw Zapruder for ABC TV. Producer, Nial Fulton (The Last Confession of Alexander Pearce, Miracles) and Executive Producer Michael Cordell (Go Back to Where You Came From, Bondi Rescue).


For further information & interview opportunities, please contact:

Tracey Taylor, ABC TV Marketing & Communications
03 9524 2313 / 0419 528 213 /