The starring cast of Emmy nominated TV-series-turned-movie Dance Academy walked the red carpet at the World Premiere of the newly released feature film.
Spun off an Aussie TV show, it made sense for the film premiere to be hosted at the popular George Street cinema in the centre of Sydney’s CBD. Fans gathered for the chance to see (and take a cheeky selfie with) their favourite on-screen characters.
Directed by Jeffrey Walker, the Dance Academy movie picks up a year and a half after the TV series finale. In the film, all of the well-loved characters have moved on from their elite training as teenagers at the National Academy of Dance, and are now leading very different post-adolescent lives.
Main character Tara Webster (played by Xenia Goodwin) suffered from a disastrous injury that crippled her career, and with it her dreams of becoming one of the top ballet dancers of her generation. The film’s plot depicts her fight to accept hard realities and to achieve greatness in more ways than one. It unfolds amidst the many challenges that come with young adulthood.
As with any TV series translated to film scenario, the challenge lies in pleasing existing fans, while not disqualifying any new viewers who want to jump on board. In this case, the film seems not to miss a step.
While the show’s followers are characteristically young, I asked actor Thomas Lacey (who plays Ben) whether he thought the movie was suitable for the whole family. He responded saying, ‘it’s funny, I’ll be in the supermarket and a mother would walk up to me saying she loves the show… it’s great’.
Catering to an audience of all ages, it’s safe to say the film written by Samantha Strauss is en pointe. It features all the familiar character favourites from the original series, with the added bonus of some new faces, including Nic Westaway of Home & Away who plays the character of Xavier.
Dance Academy happens to include an Australian ballet company performance of a segment of Swan Lake on the stage of our very own Sydney Opera House, making the film altogether more relatable and enjoyable to watch. It’s an inspirational drama about growth, aspiration, setbacks, and striving for success. See it in Aussie cinemas from Thursday 6 April.
Jill is a Sydney-based journalist who thinks happiness is finding the perfect dance partner. Follow her on: @jillamint
Dance Academy is released to Australian audiences in cinemas on April 6. Find ticket information via the official website.
Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of Studio Canal.
Photo credit: The Plus Ones.