Bush Christmas (1947 film) facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsBush Christmas
|Directed by||Ralph Smart|
|Produced by||Ralph Smart|
|Written by||Ralph Smart|
|Narrated by||John McCallum|
|Music by||Sydney John Kay|
|Editing by||James Pearson|
|Studio||Children's Entertainment Films|
|Distributed by||Rank Organization (United Kingdom)
Universal Pictures (United States)
|Release date(s)||June 1947(UK)
19 December 1947 (Australia)
|Running time||76 minutes|
|Budget||£25,000 or £15,000|
Bush Christmas is a 1947 Australian–British comedy film directed by Ralph Smart and starring Chips Rafferty. It was one of the first films from Children's Entertainment Films, later the Children's Film Foundation.
In the Australian countryside, five children are best friends, including a set of siblings, an English war evacuee, and Aboriginal Neza. They boast to three strangers, Long Bill (Chips Rafferty), Jim (John Fernside) and Blue (Stan Tolhurst), about the mare belonging to the father of one of them. The next day the mare has gone. Suspecting the three men of stealing it, the children set off to recover it.
They discover the horse thieves and harass them by stealing their food and shoes. They get trapped by the thieves in an old ghost town, but are rescued in time.
- Chips Rafferty as Long Bill
- John Fernside as Jim
- Stan Tolhurst as Blue
- Helen Grieve as Helen
- Nick Yardley as Snow
- Morris Unicomb as John
- Michael Yardley as Michael
- Neza Saunders as Neza
- Pat Penny as father
- Thelma Grigg as mother
- Clyde Combo as Old Jack
- Edmund Allison as policeman
The film was entirely shot on location in March 1946. Filming took place in the Capertee Valley and at Kanangra Tops and Burragarong Valley, in the Blue Mountains. They also did a week's work at Carr Park, Kogarah.
Neza Saunders fell off a horse while filming but had recovered within two days.
Post production was completed in Sydney by June 1946. Smart left Australia in October, promising to be back in a few months to make more movies; he took four scenarios with him.
It was serialised in children's magazines and a novelisation of the script was published. The film was also adapted for radio with a young John Meillon.
When Smart returned to Australia in January 1947 he announced plans to £150,000 worth of children's films in Australia, including a feature set on a Northern Territory outback station, a serial, and a series of documentary films. Yardley signed a contract to appeear in the territory film and also the serial, which was to be about buckjumping.
These films did not come to fruition. Smart made Bitter Springs with Raffety (1950).
Helen Grieve retired from acting to study science. Child actor Nick Yardley later had his face smashed by a boomerang.
Bush Christmas (1947 film) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.