Inside Barnaby and Vikki’s Whitsundays wedding getaway
Barnaby Joyce raised eyebrows in political circles when he popped up in Queensland's Whitsundays last weekend, given the upcoming Nationals preselection in the region, but it turns out his visit was purely for pleasure.
The former Deputy Prime Minister spent the Labour Day long weekend with partner Vikki Campion on Hamilton Island to attend the wedding of his former staffer, William Rollo, who was among his team of media advisers when his relationship with Campion went public in 2018.
It is understood when Joyce appeared on breakfast show Sunrise from Hamilton Island, it set tongues wagging in Canberra given the visit came days after George Christensen announced his retirement, leaving the Whitsundays region facing a preselection.
It seems some senior figures were concerned he was attempting to scout a replacement for Christensen. But the concern was short-lived. Instead Joyce, a fixture on the dancefloor at the ceremony, was the toast of the town, getting mobbed for selfies and stealing some attention away from Rollo and his new bride, Megan Young.
Joyce and Campion, who were sure to let people know they paid for everything privately, flying economy on $189 tickets, were also snapped ferrying guests in a golf buggy when the weather took a turn.
"Barnaby's still the King of Queensland," Rollo told Confidential.
Joyce and Campion departed the island last Monday.
Blockbuster series Young Rock about Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson not only put the city's landmarks in lights in the US but also the city's local talent.
Having already aired on NBC, the comedy series, which filmed in Brisbane from October to February, is now screening on Foxtel, giving local audiences the chance to glimpse the dozens of filming locations around the city that were transformed into Miami, Nashville and Hawaii.
The cast and crew including Australian Uli Latukefu as Johnson were seen filming at Dolphin Stadium in Redcliffe, Carlo's Naples Pizza Restaurant at Strathpine, and The Promenade at Sanctuary Cove.
The series was the second production to come out of Brisbane's Screen Queensland Studios as part of a big-budget three series deal with NBC Universal, marking the start of the current production boom in the state.
It was a godsend for the haul of local crew members, such as Brisbane cinematographer Lucas Tomoana, who, because of his ties playing local gridiron, was hand-picked to work on the American football scenes replicating Johnson's time at the University of Miami.
It was his first opportunity to work on an international production.
"I went from no work to working on the biggest job of my career. It was a pretty special moment," Tomoana, 32, said.
"My teammates from the (Bayside) Ravens were on set with me as extras."
He had lost all work because of the global pandemic and had moved home to live with his father, when he decided to join up to his local gridiron squad and start a podcast called Cinemapodgrapher.
By chance prominent cinematographer Martin McGrath listened to his podcast and after seeing on Instagram that he played American football, reached out via a direct message to offer him a job on Young Rock.
"It was pretty special being a Polynesian guy in the film industry to be on a show that champions an African American and Samoan guy and be on set with other Polynesian actors," Tomoana said.
When it came to the American football scenes, he said they used a lot of close up shots and followed the ball in a bid to convince American audiences.
"It was about making it look as energetic and hectic as possible," he said. "This team was a very famous team in the 90s and American audiences are going to be quick to see it's not realistic, so that was the main concern."
The Brisbane Broncos took a break from their training schedule to treat fans at the launch of the refurbished Rebel Sport store at Westfield Chermside on Thursday.
The squad, including Payne Haas and Brodie Croft as well as women's captain Ali Brigginshaw, were on hand at the launch to browse the store and take selfies with guests, some of whom had been lining up since 5am.
But it was the former NRL greats that caught the most attention with coach Kevin Walters being joined by Allan Langer and Petero Civoniceva.
Former swimming champion Libby Trickett hosted the event, interviewing Langer, who, still bolstered by the win over the Gold Coast Titans, boldly predicted a Broncos premiership in two years.
Players from Northside Wizards basketball were also on hand to test out the new in-store shooting circle, with Brigginshaw joining in to show off her cross-sport skills.
The store has been redeveloped to put the focus on the female shopper, with new activewear brands such as L'urv and Nimble joining the global juggernauts such as Adidas, Nike and Under Armour.
INTO THE WILDS
Australian acting star Rachel Griffiths jetted into Queensland during the week to begin production on season two of Amazon series, The Wilds.
Filming is underway on the Gold Coast after Queensland nabbed production on the global series from New Zealand.
"Hollywood down under. Excited to start season 2 #thewilds now shooting on the Gold Coast," Griffiths wrote to Instagram, thanking Screen Queensland and Ausfilm for "supporting our Ozzie crews and helping to bring this fantastic show to qland."
The production joins Ron Howard's star-studded Thirteen Lives, which is also filming on the Gold Coast.
EVENT OF THE WEEK
With the likes of Eves Karydas and Jaguar Jonze in head to toe Gucci, the best and brightest of Queensland music came together for a celebratory Queensland Music Awards at The Fortitude Music Hall on Wednesday night. Guests enjoyed a sit-down dinner while cheering the winners and performers on stage before continuing the celebrations at an after-party until the early hours of the morning.
YOUNG ROCK FILMING LOCATIONS:
Screen Queensland Studios in Hemmant, Brisbane
Brisbane Entertainment Centre
The Old Museum at Bowen Hills
Mount Gravatt lookout
Queensland Art Gallery
The Tivoli at Fortitude Valley
QUT Garden's Point U Block
Redcliffe Dolphins football club
Redcliffe Showgrounds Hall
Croatian Community Centre, Rocklea
Sleeman Sports Complex
Carlo's Naples Pizza Restaurant at Strathpine
Tempest Restaurant at Scarborough
Surrounding locations: Capalaba, Morningside, Camp Hill, Chelmer, Wynnum, Bulimba, Coorparoo, Rocklea, Capalaba, Cleveland, Yeronga, Fig Tree Pocket, Main Beach, Coolangatta, Southport.
Originally published as Inside Barnaby and Vikki's Whitsundays wedding getaway