Faraway Downs: Was the TV Show Filmed in Australia?

A reimagination and extended version of the 2008 movie ‘Australia,’ Hulu’s ‘Faraway Downs’ is a historical adventure drama series written and directed by Baz Luhrmann. The plot centers upon Lady Sarah Ashley, portrayed by Nicole Kidman, who travels from England to Australia with the sole purpose of confronting her wayward husband and selling a cattle ranch called Faraway Downs. When her husband meets his demise, King Carney attempts to make the most of the situation and take away her land.

Reluctantly, Sarah decides to take the help of a cattle drover, played by Hugh Jackman, in order to protect her ranch. Upon the arrival of a bi-racial Indigenous Australian child named Nullah, things begin to change quickly and we get to explore four life-altering years of the trio while Sarah and the Drover get involved romantically. Since most of the drama unfolds in various Australian locations, the viewers are likely to wonder if the series was shot on location or not.

Faraway Downs Was Taped Across Australia

Since ‘Faraway Downs’ is an extension of the 2008 drama film ‘Australia,’ the reimagined series naturally shares the Australian locations where it was shot, specifically Western Australia, Queensland, New South Wales, and Darwin. The production of the epic drama series reportedly got underway in late April 2007 and after about eight months of intense shooting, it got wrapped up in December of the same year.

During the shooting, Nicole Kidman was pregnant, which even caused her to faint while on a horse due to the grueling shooting schedule with temperatures soaring to 43 °C. Eight months later, in August 2008, many cast and crew members reunited to tape some pickup shots. Now, let’s get a detailed account of all the specific sites that feature in the Hulu series!

Western Australia, Australia

The state of Western Australia served as one of the primary production locations for ‘Faraway Downs.’ First and foremost, the scenes involving the Faraway Downs property were lensed in Western Australia. The entire set of the house was constructed by 40 crew members over the course of a few weeks at the foot of a large hill known as House Roof Hill, which can be spotted in the background in several scenes. A few Faraway Downs scenes were also reportedly shot around Carlton Hill in Kununurra.

Situated in the Kimberley region, the outstretched land of the El Questro Wilderness Park was also utilized to tape many pivotal exterior sequences. The concrete causeway of Ivanhoe Crossing, which is built over the mighty Ord River, as well as portions of the Gibb River also feature in quite a few scenes of ‘Faraway Downs.’

New South Wales, Australia

The shooting of a major chunk of ‘Faraway Downs’ also took place in New South Wales, located on the east coast of Australia. In order to shoot the scenes set in England, the director and his team took the production to the local government area of Camden Council. For instance, the large heritage-listed property, Camelot, doubled as the English Mansion of Lady Sarah Ashley in the series. As for the scenes involving Darwin Government House, they were reportedly lensed in and around Strickland House at 52 Vaucluse Road in Vaucluse.

When the on-location set of the Faraway Downs house was ruined due to torrential rain in Western Australia, the production team moved to Sydney and recorded many interior scenes utilizing the facilities of Disney Studios Australia at Building 16, 38 Driver Avenue in Moore Park. Home to nine different sound stages of varying sizes, the film studio complex also consists of production offices, construction workshops, art department craft shops, dressing rooms, and so on, making it a suitable production location for different kinds of projects. Moreover, a few locales of Clarence Valley Council feature in the Hulu show as well.

Other Locations in Australia

The filming unit of ‘Faraway Downs’ also took the production to the Australian state of Queensland where they set up camp in a couple of towns — Roma and Bowen. In the coastal town of Bowen, Pearl Picture Gardens also served as an important filming site. Additional portions of the Hugh Jackman starrer were recorded in the capital city of Australia’s Northern Territory — Darwin. To be specific, the cast and crew members were spotted lensing various scenes in and around Stokes Hill Wharf, which is situated at 45 Stokes Hill Road in Darwin City.

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