Hunter stars as scene for new movie

STAR: Caitlin Stasey plays Ellie Linton.
STAR: Caitlin Stasey plays Ellie Linton.

FILMING of the new Australian movie Tomorrow: When the War Began will begin in the Hunter today.

It will be shot in the region over six weeks and production will be based at Fox Studios.

The NSW Government provided a $100,000 grant through the Regional Film Fund to attract moviemakers to the Hunter.

The film will mark the directorial debut of Australian Stuart Beattie, who was the screenwriter for Collateral, Australia and the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy.

It will also star Home and Away star Lincoln Lewis, with Caitlin Stasey from Neighbours in the main role as Ellie Linton.

Minister for the Hunter Jodi McKay said it would be filmed around Raymond Terrace, Dungog and Luskintyre Bridge, and private Upper Hunter properties.

"It is estimated the production will create 200 jobs and generate approximately $60 million in economic activity for NSW with the Hunter region set to receive nearly $2 million," she said.

"I am delighted the Hunter will feature prominently in the movie as it presents an opportunity to showcase some of the region's charm and natural beauty to a national and potentially, an international audience."

Tomorrow: When the War Began is based on the first of a series of seven novels by Australian author John Marsden.

Australian film Blessed, starring former Newcastle High student Miranda Otto, has taken out the best screenplay prize at the San Sebastian film festival in Spain.

Blessed follows the complex lives and misadventures of seven youths who wander Melbourne's streets at night as their mothers await their return home. with AAP