Following the 2019/20 Black Summer fires, I decided to share my journals from the summer and create a documentary film telling the tales of fire-affected Kangaroo Island residents.

I connected with local filmmaking crew en plein air and we started filming in March 2020. During the many interviews with islanders, we learned about how the events of the most tragic bushfire day in Kangaroo Island history have impacted their lives and what their recovery journey since has looked like.

Many tears were shed during the months of filming and together we embarked on a storytelling adventure to create a memorial film for our future generations.

‘January 3rd’ has been written by myself based on this original idea and was produced by David Foreman and Ruth de la Lande and their sound engineer Gethin Craegh. We have been supported by the fire-affected Western Districts Memorial and Community Sports Centre and had financial grant funding through Wellbeing SA.

We are grateful to all the local residents who have shared their tales with us and the many people who will watch this film in the future. I believe that this has helped us all through our personal recovery battles and has helped us bond as a community even more.

The 1-hour long documentary feature was first shown at the Humans of Kangaroo Island Film and Literature Festival opening night on Friday, 8th October 2021 and received extremely positive feedback. Since then the film has been shown at other small exclusive screenings around the island and at film festivals around the world.

After shortening the original film to a 40-minute version and renaming it ‘No Safe Space’, our director David Foreman entered the film into various festivals. This version has recently won the award for Best Documentary at the 11th Toronto Indie Shorts Festival and was selected for the LA Sun Film Festival. More about this here.

If you would like a DVD copy of the film, please order it below.

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