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   Film

  • Australian film industry dates back to the late 1890's (silent films), yet the interest from overseas in their films did not come until the 1970’s.
  • It is estimated that making a feature film in Australia is about one tenth the cost of doing it in Hollywood.
  • Paul Hogan’s movies include "Crocodile Dundee 1 & 2", "Lightning Jack", "Almost An Angel" & "Flipper".
  • In 1956, the first pictures on a television overshadowed radio in Australia.
  • Some of the first Australian series dramas were "Bellbird", "No. 96", "Skippy", "Homicide", "Matlock".
  • The first Australian music shows were "Six o'clock Rock" & "Bandstand".
  • Black and white TV was viewed by 98% of the population in 1970. In 1975, color TV was introduced to Australia.
  • "This Day Tonight" was the beginnings of the current affairs shows in Australia (www.australianaustralia.com).

The most popular television shows in the 1990's were:

  1.  Friends
  2.  ER
  3.  60 Minutes
  4.  A Current Affair
  5.  This Is Your Life
  6.  Mr. Bean Married
  7.  With Children
  8.  Hey Dad
  9.  Home Improvement
  • "Pulp Fiction" stayed in the top 40 video rental charts for 22 weeks, while "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective" and "Shawshank Redemption" came in second and third respectively during the 1990's.
  • The most rented video in Australia in 1997 was "The Long Kiss Goodnight", followed by "The Rock" and "Ransom".
  • The annual attendance per person in Australia to the cinema is 3.9 times, compared with 2.0 for the UK and a whopping 35.3 times in Lebanon.
  • Australian actress Nicole Kidman's biggest movies were- "Batman Forever", "Days Of Thunder" and "The Peacemaker."  
  • Australian Actor Mel Gibson's biggest movies were- "Lethal Weapon 3", "Ransom", "Lethal Weapon 2" and "Braveheart" (www.dingoblue.net).

 

The highest grossing films of all time in Australia are:

  1.  Crocodile Dundee (48m)                                                
  2.  Babe (36m)
  3.  Jurassic Park (33m)
  4.  ET (32m)
  5.  Forrest Gump (31m)
  6.  Independence Day (30m)
  7.  Star Wars (30m)
  8.  Titanic (29m)
  9.  The Lion King (27m) 
  10.  Mrs. Doubtfire (26m)

 

       Music

  • The most popular song of all time in Australia is "I Will Always Love You" by Whitney Houston. "Everything I Do" by Bryan Adams is second,  and "Hey Jude" The Beatles third.
  • Slim Dusty had the first No. 1 hit single in Australia, back when the first charts were started here in 1958. Slim dusty is a country music legend in Australia & has the world record for the longest recording contract with the same company: fifty years.
  • The top three most successful bands in Australia in order are Dire Straits - "Love Over Gold", Fleetwood Mac - "Rumours", Led Zeppelin - "Led Zeppelin 2".
  • The Beatles song "She Loves You" stayed in the Australian charts for 42 weeks back in 1963 (www.dingoblue.net).

 

Bands & Artists That Shaped Australia's Music History

Billy Thorpe began playing in pop and blues bands in the early sixties. He also was into Co-production, writing, singing and playing in one of Mick Fleetwood’s (Fleetwood Mac) first bands, “The Zoo.” He then formed “The Aztecs” and produced some great early Aussie rock songs like- "Most People I know think that I'm Crazy", and "Over the Rainbow". He has now taken up writing and has produced two semi-autobiographies about his life in Sydney. They are called 'Sex Thugs and Rock 'n' Roll' & 'Most People I Know (Think That I'm Crazy)'.

The EasyBeats
produced "Friday on my Mind" an Easybeats classic song, set the scene for Aussie rock in 1966 and also established Australia in the world rock arena. They become one of the foremost live Aussie rock acts. None of the members were Australian at that time, two being Dutch & two British, living in Australia. They were to become one of Australia's foremost live bands.

Johnny O'Keefe was born in Sydney 1935 and become Australia's first distinctive Rock 'n' Roll singer in 1956. He made the local Australian charts in 1958 with "Wild One."  "So Tough" was the first of 5 No. 1 hits & 13 in the top 10. The song "Shout" for which he is best known, never made it to the top 10. In 1975 he released "The Living Legend" which was awarded a Platinum record. He died in 1978 from a heart attack.

Slim Dusty, (David Gordon Kirkpatrick), was born at Kempsey, NSW in 1927. His country music record "A Pub With No Beer" (released in 1957) still remains one of his most popular. The song "A Pub With No Beer" was released in eleven countries and was the first Aussie song to appear in the English charts. He has recorded over 1000 songs and has more than 100 gold records.


Col Joye
began his career with Johnny O'Keefe in 1958, and his style of music at the time was directed at the young audiences who were just getting their first taste of television. Two of his best-known hits are "Sixteen Candles" and "Bye Bye Baby."

Helen Reddy is great Australian singer who's biggest breakthrough came in 1972 with the song "I am a Woman." It became the theme song for the women’s liberation movement worldwide.

Peter Allen is an Internationally renowned singer, songwriter and pianist. Peter Allen grew up in Tenterfield NSW and then in the late 50's he & Chris Bell formed "The Allen Brothers" which took them on a tour around Asia and The United States. They released several records together until 1970 when they split up. His marriage of 3 years to Liza Minnelli also broke up in 1970. Allen then moved to New York and concentrated on his song writing and cabaret act. His hits include "I Go to Rio" (1977); "Tenterfield Saddler", "Quite Please, There's a Lady on Stage", a tribute to his former mother-in-law, singer Judy Garland; and "I Still Call Australia Home". He won an Academy award for his joint work on the theme song to the Dudley Moore movie Arthur

Olivia Newton John
was born in 1948 Cambridge England but grew up in Melbourne Australia. In 1971 she moved to the USA and did a cover of Bob Dylan’s "If Not For You" which became her first international hit. Later hits are "On the Banks Of the Ohio" (1971), "I Honestly Love you" (1984 Written by Peter Allen), "If you Love Me" (1975), "Your the one that I Want" (1978) & "Physical" (1981). She appeared in two films "Grease" (1978) & Xanadu (1980). She is still in the music industry as well as hosting a wildlife series on Television.

The Bee Gees
-The Gibb brothers were born on The Isle Of Man & started harmonizing together in their bedroom in Britain at the end of the 1950's. The Gibb family emigrated to Australia in 1958 and it wasn't long before the brothers were singing in Aussie nightclubs. In 1964, inspired by the Beatle,s they become a teenage pop group and used the money from their number one song "Spicks & Specks" to head back to England in 1966. Their first international hit was "NY Mining Disaster,1941" and this led to a run of hit songs also showing the song writing excellence of the band. Some of their hit songs are 'Massachusetts','To Love Somebody', 'Holiday', 'I've Gotta get a Message To You','I Started a Joke', 'Lonely Day's', 'How Can You Mend a Broken Heart'.  They are up there with the all-time great Aussie bands.

AC/DC
- In 1963 the Young Family moved from Glasgow, Scotland with their children; George, Angus, Malcolm being the stars of the family of 9 children. George, shortly after arriving with his family formed 'The Easybeats'. His band had a profound influence on Georges younger brothers Malcolm & Angus who then in 1973 formed the beginnings of AC/DC, (they got the name from the back of a Vacuum cleaner.) Their first gig was on New Years Eve 1973 in a small Sydney nightclub called Chequers playing covers of Chuck Berry, The Rolling Stones and The Beatles (www.dingoblue.net)


World View & Cultural Classification Traditions, Holidays, Folklore, Myths
Language, Values, Proverbs * Nonverbal Issues
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Improving Intercultural Competence * Entertainment in Australia * Australian Sports * Bibliography * Project Team 

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E-mail questions or comments to
mkfinney@depauw.edu
  January 26, 2001