Australian actors Deborah Mailman and Rachel Griffiths have begun production on the final six-episode season of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s award-winning female-led political drama series “Total Control.”
With screenplays by Stuart Page, Julia Moriarty, Pip Karmel and Meyne Wyatt, season three picks up almost two years after the explosive events of the second season.
Outsider turned kingmaker, Alex Irving (Mailman), is completely at home in the nation’s capital. While Rachel Anderson (Griffiths), now an occasional ally, is threatening to upend the entire system by establishing her own political party. However, as Alex attempts to carve out a nation changing legacy, a controversy engineered by her enemies threatens to destroy her career and public reputation. In the final season, Alex must make a choice: either she can stay true to her principles and accept defeat, or she can get her hands dirty and fight back.
Directed by Wayne Blair and Jub Clerc, “Total Control” films in Canberra, the regional NSW town of Trangie and Sydney over the next three months. Season three will premiere on ABC and ABC iview in 2024.
The supporting cast is led by Rob Collins with Blair, Anthony Hayes, Wesley Patten, Steph Tisdell, Daniela Farinacci, Lisa Flanagan, Benedict Hardie, Anita Hegh, Huw Higginson and Trisha Morton-Thomas all reprising their roles. Joining for the third season are: Catherine McClements, Fayssal Bazzi, Josef Ber, Lisa Hensley, Rosie Lourde, Maya Stange and Ursula Yovich.
The show is a Blackfella Films production with major production investment from the ABC and Screen Australia. It was financed with support from regional bodies Screen NSW, Screen ACT and VicScreen. Producers are Darren Dale and Erin Bretherton. Executive producers are Griffiths and Stuart Page. The ABC’s executive producers are Sally Riley and Kelrick Martin. International distribution is by All3Media International.
“I can’t wait to step back into the character of Alex Irving one last time,” said Mailman. “It’s personally been a wonderful journey over the last two seasons to play such a gutsy, smart and unapologetic woman.”
“The chance to take our characters to a final satisfying point of their journey while also reflecting on the huge changes in our country’s political life is going to be fantastic,” said Griffith. “ ‘Total Control’ was ground-breaking in reflecting the operating environment for women in politics in this country. That conversation has caught up, but we are only beginning to understand the weight that First Nations people in public life carry and the discourse they are subjected to.”