The premiere of new film Radical Wollongong was held in Wollongong, NSW, on May 18. About 230 people attend the event at the Gala cinema. Film writer and co-producer John Rainford introduced the film and Aboriginal leader Mark Bloxsome gave a welcome to country.
The film covered many important campaigns that fought for progressive social change in Wollongong over the past century. Among others, it covered the infamous Dalfram dispute that earned prime minister Robert Menzies the nickname “Big Iron Bob”, local draft resisters opposing the Vietnam War, the fight to get women jobs at the Port Kembla steelworks owned by BHP in the 1980s and the vibrant stop coal seam gas campaign today.
The film featured interviews with participants of these campaigns and their stories were brought to life with archival footage and photos from strikes, community rallies, coalmine work-ins and parliament occupations.
Rainford said: “Wollongong has a radical, activist history that challenges anywhere else in the country.
“The film shows how Wollongong’s radical legacies live on in today's struggles. It is a call for the spirit of people power to continue and grow.”
[The film will be shown in Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and Armidale. See radicalwollongong.com for more information.]