Actor Jimi Bani takes a break from playing the lead role of Eddie Mabo during filming at Rosewood.
Actor Jimi Bani takes a break from playing the lead role of Eddie Mabo during filming at Rosewood. Rob Williams

Rosewood backdrop for telemovie

THE country character of Rosewood was captured on film on Saturday when famous Australian actors pulled into the rural town, along with cast and crew, to film the upcoming Mabo telemovie.

The Rosewood Hotel hosted the stars of the new ABC program from 10am to midday, before Mailman stepped infront of the camera in the afternoon for a car scene along John St.

Mabo location manager Chris Strewe said Rosewood was the perfect backdrop for the feature.

"We needed a country pub, and we found Rosewood to be really picturesque," Mr Strewe said.

"It's supposed to be north-west Queensland, but you can't tell any different.

"We also filmed around Esk and Tallegalla, and we used the Rosewood historical steam train.

"Mabo worked on a train for a while, so it was very convenient."

Mr Strewe said about one-fifth of the total filming was conducted in Rosewood, which will share its background role with Townsville, Murray Island and Brisbane.

The Queensland Times understands that Rosewood will masquerade in the telemovie as 1960s Hughenden, and the hotel will feature in a scene in which main character Eddie Mabo is trying to persuade fellow Torres Strait Islanders to stand up for their rights.

Rosewood Hotel co-owner Carol Moore said she was excited to host the Mabo crew.

"It's just for the morning but, oh yes, of course it's exciting," she said.

Ms Moore said the hotel had been redecorated in 1960s style, which meant "a lot of stripping back", and the switching of new bottles for their vintage counterparts.

Rosewood local Jay-Dee Richardson said the hotel was a unique pub.

"You won't find another one like it," Mr Richardson said.

"Character - it's got more than character.

"I don't know if it's the people or the set-up, but it's got a great atmosphere."

The telemovie will be the first feature on Eddie Mabo's life.

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