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Preacher converts US cast and crew to the benefits of filming in Melbourne

Film & TV  5 Aug 2019

The fourth and final series of hit US television production Preacher launches tonight, having recently wrapped filming at Docklands Studios Melbourne.

Secured by the Victorian government via Film Victoria, Preacher is the biggest budget television production to come to Victoria since Steven Spielberg’s The Pacific (2007).

Based on DC Comics’ supernatural comic book series, Preacher follows a conflicted preacher who, during a crisis of faith, gains extraordinary power.

Preacher was developed by writer and producer Sam Catlin (Breaking Bad) with executive producers Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, and has gained a global cult following since it premiered in 2016.

Following a seven month filming and production schedule in Melbourne and regional Victoria, international cast and crew were impressed by Melbourne’s studios, facilities and local screen industry, with Catlin saying he found working here professionally and creatively rewarding.

“Working in Melbourne was an unbelievable experience – top notch crews, world class city, and I had one of the best times of my life both personally and creatively. Working at Docklands Studios Melbourne was also amazing, with state-of-the-art facilities, and stages which could handle anything we needed. I would love to film in Melbourne again, and highly recommend it to others,” Catlin said.

Preacher’s lead actor Dominic Cooper, who stars as ‘Jesse Custer’, said he was surprised at how quickly Melbourne felt like ‘home.’

“I was apprehensive in terms of bringing an entire show to film such a long way away, (but) I've never been so pleased with the decision to come and shoot here. I've felt more at home here than most places I've ever worked. I like the camaraderie, the general nature of everyone I've met here. Almost all of us have said, "I think I could live here". The crew have been incredible. I think it’s going to be the best season so far,” Cooper said.

Preacher Season 4 is expected to have injected $50 million into the Victorian economy, generating 740 jobs for local cast and crew.

More than 200 local screen businesses were engaged on the project as well as associated services such as catering, transport, construction and security.

In addition to generating significant employment and skills development opportunities for Victoria’s screen industry, the series features a Melbourne-based plotline, showcasing iconic locations in the city and regional Victoria to the world, with a potential reach of more than 100 million viewers in the US alone.

Preacher adds to Victoria’s reputation as a location of choice for high-end television, with BBC co-production The Cry and HBO’s The Leftovers among the state’s recent international productions.

The project was been supported by the Victorian Government through Film Victoria’s Incentives Program and the Australian Government’s Location Incentive program, in collaboration with Ausfilm.

Preacher is produced by Sony Pictures Television and Playmaker Studios. Commissioned by the AMC network in the USA, the series streams locally on Stan.

Australian viewers can watch Preacher Season 4 on Stan from Monday 5 August 2019.