Search SAFC


News & Events

Maralinga Tjarutja: Behind the Documentary

29 July 2020

PLEASE NOTE: This event has been rescheduled from its original date of 9 July. If you have already registered for this event via Eventbrite for its original date, you do not need to register again. All registrants will receive an email in advance of the event with a direct link to the livestream.

Join writer/director Larissa Behrendt and producer Darren Dale for an in-depth discussion of their new ABC documentary Maralinga Tjarutja.

Maralinga Tjarutja land, located in regional South Australia, was used for the British Nuclear Test Program between 1953 and 1963. The Maralinga Tjarutja people fought for the clean-up of contamination, for compensation and for the handback in 2009 of the Maralinga Village and Test Sites. They have since rebuilt traditional communities into vibrant, creative cultural communities that will ensure Maralinga Tjarutja custodianship of their lands into the future.

New SAFC supported ABC documentary Maralinga Tjarutja tells this story through the eyes of the Maralinga Tjarutja people, who have lived on their lands for over 60 thousand years. The documentary shines a fresh spotlight on what is both a story of deep tragedy and also incredible resilience, celebrating the people, their tenacious spirit and cultural strength through which they fight to retain their country.

Join writer/director Larissa Behrendt and producer Darren Dale in this interactive online Q&A session about the film, hosted by South Australian Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara actor, director, writer and singer/songwriter Elaine Crombie.

Maralinga Tjarutja is available to watch now via ABC iview – click here.

Maralinga Tjarutja: Behind the Documentary

Date: Wednesday 29 July, 2020
Time: 6.00pm to 7.00pm ACST
Location: Online via the SAFC Facebook page – click here to tune in at the designated time.
Cost: Free

Accessibility Information

This event will be Auslan interpreted

This event will be Auslan interpreted by First Nations interpreters.

If you have any questions about this event, or access requirements, please email [email protected]


Larissa Behrendt is an award-winning writer/director and author of fiction and non-fiction with a passion for telling the stories of Indigenous Australia. She has a legal background, is an experienced researcher and is involved with several arts organisations and educational programs.

She won the Australian Directors Guild Award for her documentary After the Apology, which premiered at Adelaide Film Festival in 2017, and wrote and directed the Walkley nominated documentary Innocence Betrayed that aired on NITV in 2014.

Her short film, Under Skin, In Blood, screened at Sydney Film Festival and Melbourne International Film Festival in 2015. Her short film Clan won Best Documentary at the Canberra Short Film Festival and the Shorts Film Festival in Adelaide in 2015. Her short film, Barbara, has been nominated for an AACTA award and Dendy Awards.

Larissa is also the host of Speaking Out on the ABC National Radio network.

For more on Larissa visit and


Darren has been a company director of Blackfella Films, Australia’s premier Indigenous production company, since 2000.

Most recently Darren has completed a third season of SBS ratings hit series Filthy Rich & Homeless, and is also producing for SBS the historical documentary series First Wars and a major observational documentary series about addiction. For the ABC Darren has recently produced, with Jacob Hickey, the feature documentary Maralinga Tjarutja, and is also producing a series adaptation of Bruce Pascoe’s acclaimed book Dark Emu, a three part series about Australian literature and a feature documentary about iconic fashion designers Jenny Kee and Linda Jackson.

In 2019 he completed AACTA Award winning Best Television Drama Series Total Control, produced with Miranda Dear, and starring Deborah Mailman and Rachel Griffiths. A second season is in development.

Other recent credits include 2017 feature documentary In My Own Words, written and directed by Erica Glynn for NITV and SBS, two part 2018 SBS documentary series How ‘Mad’ Are You? , 2016 feature documentary Deep Water: The Real Story which investigated the gay hate epidemic of crimes in Sydney during the 1980s and 1990s and, with Miranda Dear, the companion four-part SBS crime drama series Deep Water, starring Noah Taylor and Yael Stone.

Darren also produced Logie award winning SBS documentary series First Contact, acclaimed telemovie Mabo, which aired on ABC in 2012 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the landmark High Court decision, and groundbreaking ABC drama Redfern Now, the first drama series on Australian television to be written, produced and directed by Indigenous Australians.

With his Blackfella Films business partner Rachel Perkins, Darren co-curated the film program for the Message Sticks Indigenous Festival at the Sydney Opera House from 2002 until 2011, and in 2012 presented the curated program of Indigenous films Blackfella Films Presents in partnership with the Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane International Film Festivals.

Darren currently serves on the board of ACMI and the Sydney Film Festival. He was on the board of Screen NSW from 2011 to 2015, the Council of the Australian Film Television and Radio School from 2012 to 2018, with a term as Deputy Chair from 2014 to 2018, and the Sydney Festival. In 2012 he was the recipient of the prestigious AFTRS Honorary Degree.


Elaine is a South Australian Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara actor, director, producer, singer/songwriter, standup comedian and writer who has appeared in multiple plays, TV series and films.

Her television credits include Top of the Lake, How to Stay Married, Rosehaven S2, Grace Beside Me, 8MMM Aboriginal Radio, Nowhere Boys S4, Get Krack!n, Black Comedy, Redfern Now, and Kiki and Kitty, and she has appeared in the films Jackie Jackie, Black Talk and Top End Wedding.

In 2019 Elaine and her mother Lillian were the subject of SAFC supported and SA made SBS documentary short, Deadly Family Portraits: Crombie Crew.

« Back to News