Sex, trust & consent: Asher Keddie, Richard Roxburgh in The Hunting

• Tackling themes of misogyny, privacy, sexuality and sexualisation, online exploitation, masculinity and gender

The four-part drama series The Hunting from Adelaide’s Closer Productions will premiere on SBS at 8.30pm Thursday 1 August.

Starring Asher Keddie (Offspring, The Cry) and Richard Roxburgh (Rake, Hacksaw Ridge), The Hunting intimately and dramatically imagines the lives of four teenagers, their teachers and families throughout the lead up, revelation and aftermath of a nude teen photo scandal.

When two high school teachers discover students are sharing explicit photos of their underage friends and peers online, the revelation has devastating consequences for the students and their families. Tackling themes of misogyny, privacy, sexuality and sexualisation, online exploitation, masculinity and gender, the series uses this singular event as a way of exploring some of the most pressing issues of our time and offering a vital portrait of modern, multicultural Australia.

Asher Keddie said:

“There are so many hard-wired ideas we’ve grown up with that we’re realising are unacceptable. I have four and nine year old sons, and the world that they are navigating is vastly different to the one I grew up in. I think The Hunting, and the conversations it will inevitably ignite are really necessary, to stay on the front foot and to help raise emotionally intelligent, respectful human beings” 

Richard Roxburgh said:

“This series explores deeply entrenched patterns of behaviour. It’s critical for us to understand that the ripples of this behaviour have consequences, and in particular, they permeate masculine culture everywhere. Any parent will be aware of the new pressures of dealing with the conundrums of social media once your children can go down the rabbit hole of accessible internet.”

SBS director of television and online content Marshall Heald said:

“Tightly paced and gripping, The Hunting unpicks the choices of four diverse teens with compassion and humanity. This provocative modern drama will force audiences to face uncomfortable questions about social media and our online lives, and where consent and trust fits into this. This is vital viewing for anyone with a teenager in their life.”

Joining Asher and Richard are Sam Reid (Bloom, Lambs of God), Jessica De Gouw (Arrow, Deadline Gallipoli), Luca Sardelis (Nowhere Boys, Deadlock), Yazeed Daher (The Heights, Safe Harbour), and newcomers Kavitha Anandasivam and Alex Cusack.

Rounding out the ensemble are Pamela Rabe (Wentworth), Leah Vandenberg (The Letdown), Rodney Afif (Ali’s Wedding), Sachin Joab (Lion), Elena Carapetis (Look Both Ways) and Anna Lindner (Wolf Creek TV).

The Hunting is created by Sophie Hyde (Animals, 52 Tuesdays) and Matthew Cormack (52 Tuesdays, F*!#ing Adelaide), directed by Ana Kokkinos (Mustangs FC, Seven Types of Ambiguity) and Sophie Hyde, and produced by Rebecca Summerton (Animals, F*!#ing Adelaide), Sophie Hyde and Lisa Scott (Pine Gap, Janet King).

The series is written by Matthew Cormack and Niki Aken (The Secret Daughter, Janet King), executive produced by Sue Masters (SBS). Director of photography is Bonnie Elliott (Palm Beach, Romper Stomper) and editor is Bryan Mason (Animals, 52 Tuesdays).

The Hunting is a Closer Productions production for SBS, with major production investment from SBS and Screen Australia, in association with the South Australian Film Corporation. International sales are handled by DCD Rights.

The Hunting airs over four weeks, premiering Thursday 1 August at 8.30pm on SBS, and on SBS On Demand.

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