ABC has announced the premiere of its first big drama projects for 2012, The Straits.
Filmed in Far North Queensland and the Torres Strait, The Straits is described as “an exotic, darkly humorous crime drama.”
With a cast including Brian Cox, Aaron Fa’Aoso, Jimi Bani, Firass Dirani, Rena Owen and Suzannah Bayes-Morton the 10 part series is produced by Matchbox Pictures (The Slap, My Place).
Significantly, the series will begin before the start of official ratings, with a feature-length premiere at 8:30pm Thursday February 2nd. It will also be replayed on ABC2 the following night.
This is a story of a family as much as it is a tale of crime.
Harry Montebello is rich. Of Maltese extraction, raised on the streets of London, he now runs one of the most successful and respected crime organisations in Queensland. He is married to a Torres Strait Island woman and runs his operation from Cairns. Virtually untouchable, he seems to have it all.
Which is why his family is shocked when he announces that he wants his three sons to compete for the right to replace him as head of the family when the time comes for him to retire.
Effectively, he pits his sons against each other in their endeavours, each running one area of the family’s operation while his daughter must learn to manage the family finances. This outrages his wife Kitty who has been expecting Harry to honour her family traditions and appoint their eldest son Noel as successor.
Over the course of 10 episodes, Noel, his brothers Marou and Gary, and sister, Sissi, jockey for dominant position as the family faces a series of threats to their business … and to their lives. Will the Montebellos resolve their differences and unite to overcome bikers on the mainland, and outlaw suppliers and raskols in Papua New Guinea, or will the family collapse into internal warfare?