Middle Island penguins feature in documentary

Wayne Dyer with cameraman Mick Purdy in Warrnambool to shoot a documentary on the Middle Island penguins and local wildlife.

Wayne Dyer with cameraman Mick Purdy in Warrnambool to shoot a documentary on the Middle Island penguins and local wildlife.

IT may not hit the big screen until next year but the film Oddball has already spawned its own offshoots.

A film crew was in Warrnambool last week to continue its filming of five documentaries inspired by the film.

Acclaimed former Channel Nine journalist Wayne Dyer and cameraman Mick Purdy caught up with Premier Denis Napthine during the state leader’s visit to Warrnambool last Friday.

Dyer explained he was working for WTFN Entertainment to produce five documentaries for National Geographic.

Each of these documentaries will run for an hour and the subjects will be little penguins, pests and predators, guard animals, the true story behind Oddball and the impact of the film on Warrnambool.

“Oddball is a very unique film and it is our job to get behind the scenes and to delve into the many stories that surround the main story,” Dyer said.

“And I think it is also a great opportunity to show what a positive impact the film industry can have on communities like Warrnambool.

“This film has the potential to put Warrnambool on the map.  It could provide a real tourism boom for the city.

“And it is very interesting getting behind the scenes and finding out how the filming of Oddball has impacted on businesses in Warrnambool and looking into the positive experience of the locals who were involved in some way.”

The themes of each of the documentaries will allow the filmmakers to explore in depth a range of issues, including the weird and wonderful workings of the animal kingdom.

The role of the Maremma dogs to guard the Middle Island penguins will be looked at closely, as will other guard animals: alpacas, llamas and donkeys.

The cunning ways of the fox will be looked at, along with the destruction caused by other introduced species such as cane toads and rabbits on the native flora and fauna.

The documentary makers have been on the Oddball set in Warrnambool and Melbourne as part of their work.

Oddball is based on the story of Mortlake’s Allan “Swampy” Marsh and the world-first project that saw his two Maremma dogs used to protect penguins from foxes on Warrnambool’s Middle Island.

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