Mccune magic to rub off on reef

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - SAM SMALLBONE

GOLD Lo­gie win­ner Lisa McCune will be div­ing the depths of the Great Bar­rier Reef and scal­ing the canopy of the Dain­tree Rain­for­est when she stars in and co-pro­duces the new fam­ily TV se­ries Reef Doc­tors next year.

Reef Doc­tors - work­ing ti­tle Hope’s Reef - is a fast-paced ac­tion-ad­ven­ture se­ries for Net­work Ten which is ex­pected to be the big­gest Aus­tralian se­ries to hit Far North Queens­land in more than a decade.

Aus­tralia’s lead­ing pro­ducer of high qual­ity chil­dren’s and fam­ily pro­gram­ming Jonathan Shiff from Jonathan M. Shiff Pro­duc­tions will be work­ing along­side co-pro­ducer and ac­tress Lisa McCune in Port Dou­glas to film the 13-episode se­ries.

Best known for her roles in Blue Heel­ers and Sea Pa­trol, McCune will be star­ring as Dr Sam Ste­wart, the Sher­lock Holmes of trop­i­cal medicine and the head doc­tor in the only med­i­cal clinic for the Great Bar­rier Reef.

Sam leads a hand­ful of ded­i­cated prac­ti­tion­ers hop­ing to ex­tract the hid­den se­crets from venom that have the power to cure some of the world’s most fa­tal dis­eases.

On a daily ba­sis, her small team of medics deals with ev­ery­thing from deadly snakebites and jel­ly­fish stings, to divers with the bends and trop­i­cal dis­eases that can spread like wild­fire.

But it’s not all med­i­cal emer­gen­cies and dra­mas for the ven­dom­docs on Hope Is­land.

Life’s also an ad­ven­ture - wind surf­ing, scuba div­ing, ab­seil­ing, and at night, kick­ing back at the Back­pack­ers Hos­tel. In the steamy, ro­man­tic trop­i­cal nights at the end of a long day there may even be find­ing love.

McCune said she is ex­cited to be step­ping into this di­verse role - which, for the first time, will also see her play­ing a sin­gle mother.

“Hav­ing known Jonathan Shiff for so many years, it’s great to be fi­nally work­ing with him on

this pro­ject for Net­work Ten and ZDF in Ger­many,”Ger­many ” McCune said.said

“The Far North of our coun­try is a fron­tier of great beauty and un­known dan­gers, and this is where my char­ac­ter Sam Ste­wart be­lieves medicine will find new an­swers.”

Pro­ducer Jonathan M. Shiff, renowned for his pro­duc­tion of Ocean Girl and H20: Just Add Wa­ter, ap­proached McCune about the op­por­tu­nity to not only star in, but also co-pro­duce the se­ries at its in­cep­tion.

“This se­ries rep­re­sents ex­cit­ing new growth for our com­pany to­wards prime­time and fam­ily view­ing,” Mr Shiff said.

“Lisa is an ex­tra­or­di­nary Aus­tralian tal­ent and we are thrilled to col­lab­o­rate with her in a se­ries with world wide ap­peal.”

Mr Shiff said the se­ries had a po­ten­tial au­di­ence of 100 mil­lion peo­ple world­wide which could have mas­sive flow-on ben­e­fits for the re­gion.

“Our shows are seen in 170 coun­tries world­wide, with an es­ti­mated weekly au­di­ence of 180 mil­lion,” he said.

TheT fam­ily se­ries will be shot­sho in Queens­land at Vil­lage Road­showRoa Stu­dios on the Gold CoastCoa and will use Far North Queens­land’s beaches, the Great Bar­rier Reef from Port Dou­glas and the Dain­tree rain­for­est as the stun­ning back­drops for this fresh fam­ily med­i­cal drama.

The lure of Far North Queens­land pro­duc­tion val­ues and Lisa McCune’s star power proved to be a win­ning com­bi­na­tion for Ten. Ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer of drama and pro­duc­tion for Net­work Ten Rick Maier can’t wait to see the ac­tion-ad­ven­ture se­ries on the net­work.

“We’re very ex­cited to be back in pro­duc­tion with a new se­ries shot en­tirely in Queens­land. Jonathan is one of our favourite pro­duc­ers, the writers and direc­tors are the best in the busi­ness, and of course Lisa McCune is a fan­tas­tic ad­di­tion to the Ten fam­ily,” he said.

Reef Doc­tors is pro­duced in as­so­ci­a­tion with Net­work Ten, ZDF En­ter­prises Ger­many, with fund­ing from Screen Queens­land and the Gold Coast City Coun­cil.

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