Mysterious sightings have been reported around inner-Sydney over the last week. A door to the past has opened, affording locals a glimpse of one of their city’s most colorful eras…the 1920’s. A time when notorious vice queens, Tilly Devine and Kate Leigh battled for supremacy over a nefarious world built on illegal drugs, gambling, extortion and prostitution. When brothels and sly grog shops flourished and gangs of thugs slashed their opposition into silence until the streets ran with blood.
Welcome to the compelling world of Underbelly: Razor.
Based on the best-selling book RAZOR by Larry Writer, this eagerly anticipated drama will be the fourth installment of the series that has revitalised Australian television drama and will bring to life Australia’s two famed vice queens along with infamous gangsters Norman Bruhn, Guido Calletti, Big Jim Devine, Squizzy Taylor, Phil “the Jew” Jeffs, John “Snowy” Cutmore and Frank “the Little Gunman” Green.
Starring Danielle Cormack as Kate Leigh, Chelsie Preston Crayford as Tilly Devine alongside a stellar cast that includes Jeremy Lindsay Taylor, Jack Campbell, Steve Le Marquand, John Batchelor, Felix Williamson, Khan Chittenden and newcomer Anna McGahan as delectable prostitute, Nellie Cameron, Underbelly: Razor commenced filming on 4 April and will shoot on location in Sydney until early August 2011.
The show’s 13 episodes will be directed by Tony Tilse, Cherie Nowlan, Shawn Seet and David Caesar and produced by Elisa Argenzio and Peter Gawler with Des Monaghan, Greg Haddrick and Jo Horsburgh as Executive Producers. Regular UnderbellyWriters Peter Gawler and Felicity Packard will return joined by Michaeley O’Brien and Jeff Truman.
Nine’s Head of Drama, Jo Horsburgh said, “Underbelly: Razor is an ambitious and welcomed instalment for Nine, with Screentime, of the Underbelly franchise. It is a fascinating glimpse into back alleys, bedrooms and grog shops, where the good, the bad, and downright naughty, battle it out for supremacy in a post World War 1 Australia. It's sophisticated and raunchy. Fantastic scripts delivering all that the audience have come to expect from Underbelly, great characters, great stories and great entertainment.”
“Underbelly: Razor marks an exciting new development in the Underbelly franchise,” said Des Monaghan, Executive Director of Screentime. “The women who battle for control of the underworld are truly incredible characters whose stories are as fresh today as when they occurred. And despite legendary criminal figures, Squizzy Taylor and Norman Bruhn, our story is dominated by extraordinary women such as Kate Leigh, Tilly Devine, Nellie Cameron and arguably Australia’s first policewoman, Lillian Armfield. A truly rich tale with larger than life characters.”
Historical images from the NSW Police Forensic Photography Archive, Justice & Police Museum, Historic Houses Trust www.hht.net.au.