Haven't we all at some point in time fantasized about stepping through a cinema/TV screen and into the world of our favourite movies and television shows? I certainly have!

With its modern, urban setting and stunning harbour, it is easy to see why Sydney leads the way as an ideal and versatile shooting destination. Movies shot here have been set in New York (Godzilla: Final Wars, Kangaroo Jack), Chicago (The Matrix and sequels), London (Birthday Girl), Seville (Mission Impossible 2), Bombay (Holy Smoke), Darwin (Australia), Myanmar (Stealth), Mars (Red Planet) and the fictitious city of Metropolis (Superman Returns, Babe: Pig in the City).

Whether popular landmarks or off the beaten track locations that are often hard to find, you can now explore Sydney in a fun and unique way with the SYDNEY ON SCREEN walking guides. Catering to Sydneysiders as much as visitors, the guides have something to offer everyone, from history, architecture and movie buffs to nature lovers.

See where productions such as Superman Returns, The Matrix and sequels, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Candy, Mission Impossible 2, Mao's Last Dancer, Babe: Pig in the City, Kangaroo Jack, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Muriel's Wedding, The Bold and the Beautiful, Oprah's Ultimate Australian Adventure and many more were filmed.

Maps and up-to-date information on Sydney's attractions are provided to help you plan your walk. Pick and choose from the suggested itinerary to see as little or as much of the city as you like.

So, come and discover the landscapes and locations that draw filmmakers to magical Sydney, and walk in the footsteps of the stars!


Subscribe to the blog and keep up with all the latest Aussie film and entertainment news. Read about what the stars are up to, who's in town, what movies are currently filming or being promoted. Locate us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sydneyonscreen and "like" our page!

Sydney on Screen walking guides now on sale!

Click on the picture above to see a preview of all four walking guides and on the picture below to see larger stills of Sydney movie and television locations featured in the slideshow!

Copyright © 2011 by Luke Brighty / Unless otherwise specified, all photographs on this blog copyright © 2011 by Luke Brighty

Sydney on Screen guides are now available for purchase at the following outlets:

Travel Concierge, Sydney International Airport, Terminal 1 Arrivals Hall (between gates A/B and C/D), Mascot - Ph: 1300 40 20 60

The Museum of Sydney shop, corner of Bridge & Phillip Streets, Sydney - Ph: (02) 9251 4678

The Justice & Police Museum shop, corner of Albert & Phillip Streets, Sydney - Ph: (02) 9252 1144

The Mint shop, 10 Macquarie Street, Sydney - Ph: (02) 8239 2416

Hyde Park Barracks shop, Queen Square, Sydney - Ph: (02) 8239 2311

Travel Up! (travel counter) c/o Wake Up Sydney Central, 509 Pitt Street, Sydney - Ph (02) 9288 7888

The Shangri-La Hotel (concierge desk), 176 Cumberland Street, The Rocks, Sydney - Ph: (02) 9250 6018

The Sebel Pier One (concierge desk), 11 Hickson Road, Walsh Bay, Sydney - Ph: (02) 8298 9901

The Radisson Plaza Hotel Sydney (concierge desk), 27 O'Connell Street, Sydney - Ph: (02) 8214 0000

The Sydney Marriott Circular Quay (concierge desk), 30 Pitt Street, Sydney - Ph: (02) 9259 7000

Boobook on Owen, 1/68 Owen Street, Huskisson - Ph: (02) 4441 8585

NSW, interstate and international customers can order copies of Sydney on Screen using PayPal. Contact us at sydneyonscreen@hotmail.com to inquire about cost and shipping fees.

All four volumes of Sydney on Screen are available to download onto your PC or Kindle at:
Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.fr, Amazon.de, Amazon.es and Amazon.it

Mia Wasikowska named Star of the Year by Australian International Movie Convention

Aussie Mia's star keeps on rising
Australian actress Mia Wasikowska is currently in France filming . Source: AFP

James Wigney, The Daily Telegraph, reports

Rising Aussie star Mia Wasikowska got a bonus birthday present today with news she has been named as the Star of the Year by the Australian International Movie Convention.

The Canberra-born actor, who turns 24 today, was honoured by the convention, which opened on the Gold Coast last night, for an already stellar career that includes the HBO hit In Treatment and whose movies including Alice In Wonderland, Stoker and Lawless, have made more than $1 billion at the box office.

Wasikowska will next be seen in Tracks, director John Curran's adaptation of Robyn Davidson's memoir of her epic journey on foot across the Australian desert in 1977 accompanied by four camels and a dog.

Tracks screened in competition at this year's Venice Film Festival, had a gala screening at the Toronto Film Festival, and opened the Adelaide Film Festival last week.

The movie was Wasikowska's first Australian feature film since the 2007 monster croc movie Rogue. Since then she has acted opposite Johnny Depp, Daniel Craig and Nicole Kidman, appeared on the cover of Vanity Fair and drawn praise from the likes of Glenn Close and Meryl Streep.

"It's a real honour to have this award," she said. "The film was very special for me - it gave me the chance to be able to work in Australia again for the first time in a long time and to reconnect with the Australian industry."

Wasikowska is currently in France filming the title role in the coming film adaptation of the literary classic Madame Bovary.

Former Neighbours star Caitlin Stasey has had steamy scenes cut from a new US series which also stars Aussie Adelaide Kane

 Caitlin Stasey at the Swiss-Grand in Bondi.
Caitlin Stasey at the Swiss-Grand in Bondi. Source: News Limited

Maria Lewis, The Daily Telegraph, reports

Former Neighbours star Caitlin Stasey is set to have sexplicit scenes cut from a new US drama.

The 23-year old actress stars as handmaiden to Mary Queen Of Scots - also played by an Australian actress, Adelaide Kane - in historical television series Reign.

The pilot episode screens in the US on the CW network this week and features Stasey's character pleasuring herself on a castle stairwell after watching two newlyweds make love.

The King of France, played by Alan Van Sprang, catches her and offers to sleep with her instead.

The steamy scene will remain in the show, but the more explicit footage has been cut.

It could be the big break in the US the Tomorrow When The War Began star has been waiting for, with the actress building a slow and steady body of work in TV and film productions.

Roles on CW shows have proved key for her former co-star Phoebe Tonkin (The Vampire Diaries, The Originals) and Aussies Claire Holt (The Vampire Diaries, The Originals), Nathaniel Buzolic (The Vampire Diaries) and Jessica De Gouw (Arrow) - all of whom have cracked the Hollywood market.

Tina Arena's family told her to be a runaway bride on wedding day

Singer Tina Arena Source: Supplied

Cameron Adams, The Daily Telegraph, reports

Tina Arena has opened up about her divorce from former manager Ralph Carr.

In her new autobiography Now I Can Dance Arena says she felt "disconnected" from Carr on their wedding day in 1995.

Arena revealed Carr was angry when she refused to sell photographs of their wedding to a magazine.

She also wrote her parents and sisters were worried about her marrying her manager and mixing business with pleasure and told her to be a "runaway bride" on her wedding day.

"They had their reservations about the wedding," Arena told News Corp.

"And they were right. Going through those experiences are what make or break a human. There was a lot learnt from that experience. That's important to not forget. But sometimes you should listen to what the people around you are telling you."

Arena said she did not clear the tales of her marriage in her book with Carr, whose management stable now includes magician Cosentino, singer Kate Ceberano and footballers Travis Cloke and Dustin Martin.

"We don't speak," Arena says of her former husband.

"It's my book, it's not about him. My life started before him and has continued really successfully without him.

"There's stories that were not able to make the cut, that's the way it goes. It's my story but I'm dealing with elements beyond my control. There's a sense of alluding to things, letting the reader read between the lines."

While she confirms long held rumours their messy divorce in 1999 was a "sh--fight" she diplomatically shies away from going into further detail.

"I think I paint enough of a picture. It's not important. Seriously. I've never had an interesting conversation about the subject of a divorce. The only interesting thing is what you discover, the lengths people will go to prove their point. That's intriguing, nothing else is."

Arena is also quick to give Carr credit for his part in her career comeback that started with international hit Chains in 1994.

"I think I've been unbelievably elegant (about Carr). There were some wonderful things in that collaboration early on. Sometimes people can't mix things. When the lines get blurred they get blurred. But really my divorce is the least interesting aspect of my life these past few years. There's so much more tangible stuff than that. But always give credit where it's due. I believe that sincerely. I moved on pretty fast. I didn't have a choice. Off I went. And the fun started. The discovery started and it was bloody awesome."

Arena's new album Reset is released tomorrow.

Rachel Griffiths relishes new role in remake of Aussie cult film Patrick

Griffiths finds horror in comfort zone
Rachel Griffiths says the original Patrick was "probably the scariest movie I've ever seen".

Neala Johnson, The Daily Telegraph, reports

Rachel Griffiths doesn't reckon too much has changed for Aussie actors in the 20 years since she jetted off to the US.

"I mean, I grew up when Judy was nailing it, and Bryan, Jack and Mel ... The fundamental difference," says the 44-year-old Melburnian, "is that I went over on Muriel's Wedding, on a movie that had grossed millions worldwide. That opened doors and it gave me a confidence.

"These younger actors - Sharni Vinson's a good example, or a Poppy Montgomery - that go over with a dream and a hope and a lot of f---king balls ... I really love them for that."

With Six Feet Under then Brothers & Sisters wrapping Griffiths up in American TV land for a decade, she has made the last couple of years "about doing everything different".

"I did Broadway, I played Dulcie Boling (in ABC TV's Magazine Wars) which is really out of my repertoire, I did Rob Connolly's Assange movie (Underground) ..."

One offer Griffiths received during this time during this time was so out of her repertoire, her agent almost didn't tell her. It was a part in a remake of cult 1978 Aussie horror film Patrick, about a coma patient with telekinetic powers and a dangerous crush.

"My agent said, 'Oh you don't really want to do that do you?'," Griffiths recalls. "I grew up watching this movie - my cousins and I would watch it when at my Aunt Mary's house and we'd always scream." It's probably the scariest movie I've ever seen because after Patrick I couldn't watch scary movies."

In the new Patrick, the nurse is played by Vinson and the creepy doctor by Charles Dance. As the matron, Griffiths was thrilled to meet a "gruesome end".

Different again for Griffiths last year was shooting a role in Saving Mr Banks, about Walt Disney's attempts to convince Australian author P.L. Travers to let him turn Mary Poppins into a movie. Starring Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson, and with an Oscar-friendly January release date, it's a big deal movie.

But for Griffiths it was just "a small, drop-in role".

"I'm playing a fragment of a memory of an idea of a notion of a child's view of the past. So it was nice to be part of it, but it wasn't a big deal for me."

Between acting gigs, she's also been developing two TV ideas she hopes will find a home on the US cable networks: "They're very American, quite paranoid, convoluted propositions."

Multiple Grammy Award-nominated RnB star Brian McKnight announces full band tour of Australia

Brian McKnight is bringing his full band to Australia.
Brian McKnight is bringing his full band to Australia. Source: Supplied
The Daily Telegraph reports

He has written songs for some of the world's biggest artists, now Brian McKnight is heading to Australia to give us a taste of some of his work.

The R&B icon and Grammy award-nominated artist is heading to Sydney in March alongside his full band to wow audiences with his urban show.

"Last time I came by myself, this time I have my whole band and my crew and we will be able to give you the full Brian McKnight experience," McKnight told Confidential.

"It will be a lot more dynamic."

The singer, songwriter and producer has worked with some of music's biggest names including

Mariah Carey, P. Diddy, Justin Timberlake, Nelly and Australia's very own Guy Sebastian.

"Guy is one of the most talented people I have ever met," he said.

"Everyone can sing in a studio but he can sing just as well sitting right next to you.

"I love working with really talented people and he is right at the top of that list. "

Sam Worthington confirms he and Lara Bingle are an item with racy first picture on Instagram

Lara Bingle and Sam Worthington shopping together at Bondi Junction Westfield on Saturday. Picture:
Lara Bingle and Sam Worthington shopping together at Bondi Junction Westfield on Saturday. Picture: Source: INF

The Daily Telegraph reports

Aussie Hollywood star Sam Worthington has debuted on Instagram with a racy selfie of himself and new squeeze Lara Bingle.

Both the photo, which appears to have been taken by Lara, and Worthington seem to be focusing on some of the model's most eye-catching assets.

It is the first confirmation from the Avatar star himself that he and Bingle are an item.

Bingle had herself already blown their cover on social media and Sydney's paparazzi have been eager to fill in the blanks since they got together in the Harbour City late last week.

The pair first hooked up in New York just over a fortnight ago.

On September 28 they attended the Cotton On Foundation's Global Citizen Concert in New York's Central Park, headlined by Bono, Kings of Leon, Alicia Keys and Stevie Wonder.

Bingle picked up Worthington shortly after he arrived in Sydney last week and they spent the afternoon together driving around Sydney running errands and drinking juice.

Worthington is also understood to have watched Bingle during a photo shoot at Luxe Studios in Darlinghurst.

Tony Abbott in danger of copping savage red-head revenge from US comedian Kathy Griffin

Comedian Kathy Griffin. Source: Supplied

Maria Lewis, The Daily Telegraph, reports

Comedian Kathy Griffin has one target firmly in her sights when she touches down in Australia this week, and that target is Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

"If you think I'm not going to go political in a foreign country, think again," she told Confidential.

"It's going to be all Tony Abbott, all the time.

"Being a ranga myself I'd like to talk about Julia Gillard's departure."

An outspoken LBGT activist, the US funny woman said it's only right that she brings up gay marriage given it affects at least half of her audience.

"How can I not poke fun at a conservative movement for trying to stop a gay wedding?

"Gay weddings are fabulous and fabulousness is a train that cannot be derailed.

"What I love about the lesbian and gay community is that they'll just go and get married anyway, without your permission.

"We've just gone through legalising it state-by-state here and when it comes to gays and marriage it's like decorating a house.

"They're going to do it whether you like it or not, so you may as well just get on with it."

The 52-year old arrives Down Under for the Just For Laughs festival and plays at the Sydney Opera House on Friday evening.

Never one to shy away from controversy, Griffin said she has been bouncing around a few ideas about how to make a dramatic stage entrance.

"I would like to do a Hugh Jackman and come flying down only to face plant in front of Oprah.

"Or I could enter naked on a wrecking ball like Miley Cyrus - I might be the first one to do that at the Opera House."

Thoughts for all those affected by today's bushfires

Our hearts go out to all those involved in today’s terrible bushfires. Hope everyone stays safe!

Australia's Oscars - the AACTAs -move to a prime time screening on Channel Ten

AACTA President Geoffrey Rush with Nicole Kidman, Cate Blanchett and Russell Crowe at the 2013 AACTA Awards.
AACTA President Geoffrey Rush with Nicole Kidman, Cate Blanchett and Russell Crowe at the 2013 AACTA Awards. Source: News Limited
 Neala Johnson, The Daily Telegraph, reports

The AACTA Awards are moving to prime time.

The AACTA (Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts) Awards have in past years struggled to find a broadcast home worthy of their place as Australia's answer to the Oscars, but today it was announced that Network Ten would broadcast the third AACTAs ceremony at 8.30pm on Thursday, January 30.

Announcing the partnership in Sydney today, AACTA President Geoffrey Rush said, "The reception and ongoing support of AACTA and the AACTA Awards activities both here and abroad over the past two years has been magnificent. I look forward to the continued opportunity to elevate and celebrate Australian screen achievements."

Ten was also the telecast partner for the awards in January of this year, but did not broadcast the event, hosted by Russell Crowe, until 9.30pm.

The big movie winners in 2013 were The Sapphires and Wish You Were Here, while Howzat! and Puberty Blues dominated the TV categories. Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman also attended the event.

Fourteen feature films are currently in competition for the 2014 AACTAs, with screenings to begin today so member voters can whittle the field down to the final nominees.

Next year's AACTAs will again be split over two days at Sydney's Star Event Centre, with an Awards Luncheon on January 28 focusing on more technical categories followed by the glitzy Awards Ceremony on January 30.

Angelina Jolie to wear good luck charm from war hero whose story she tells in new film, Unbroken

Angelina Jolie and war hero Louie Zamperini have become friends during the development of her new film, Unbroken, and has promised to wear the necklace he gave her every day during filming in Australia. Source: Supplied

The Daily Telegraph reports

Actor-turned-director Angelina Jolie has been wearing a special necklace on the set of her new prisoner-of-war movie Unbroken after receiving the gift from the film's real-life subject.

The Wanted star has started work on the movie adaptation of Olympian Louis Zamperini's survival story, and she has a lucky charm to help her make all the right decisions.

Zamperini, who was captured by the Japanese during World War II, struck up a close friendship with Jolie while she was developing the project, now shooting in Australia, and he has shown his support for the Hollywood beauty by giving her a gold pendant in the shape of a running shoe - a nod to his days as an athlete at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

He tells People magazine, "Angelina is a human dynamo, and I know she will tell this story in the right way."

Jolie admits tackling Zamperini's life story has been a little daunting, but she's proud to be in charge of the project, which is based on Laura Hillenbrand's biography.

She says, "Like all readers of Laura's book and all people who love and admire Louis, I am a fan. It will be hard to make a film worthy of this great man. I am deeply honoured to have the chance."

British newcomer Jack O'Connell will portray Zamperini in the film, while Domhnall Gleeson has been cast as war hero Russell Allen Phillips.

Zamperini became a prisoner of war in 1943 when his US air force plane crashed in the Pacific and he was captured by Japanese soldiers behind enemy lines after spending over a month at sea without food or water.