Top of The Lake hailed

GRANT BRYANT IN QUEENSTOWN
Last updated 05:00 29/01/2013

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Top Of The Lake, the mini-series shot in Queenstown last year, has premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim and reports of "raunch and violence", and has had New Zealand screening dates announced.

New Zealand screening dates will be only a few days behind the series premiere on the United States' Sundance channel.

In New Zealand it will not be broadcast on free-to-air channels, but only on Sky's UKTV channel.

The seven-part series will kick off at 8.30pm on March 25.

The gritty drama, helmed by Oscar-winning Kiwi film director Jane Campion, revolves around the disappearance of a pregnant 12-year-old, her charismatic drug-lord father, rape, murder, a new-age women's camp and corrupt police force.

The series looks set to deliver stunning cinematography showcasing the scenic beauty of shooting locations which included Queenstown, Glenorchy, Paradise and Moke Lake - which hide a dark underbelly.

"A classic example of a story unfolding in a gorgeous setting that hides no end of squalor, depravity and corruption under the surface, this mystery involving incest, molestation, damaged women and those old standbys - sex and murder - is the creation of Campion and [co-writer] Gerard Lee," The Hollywood Reporter said.

Although the fictional name "Laketop" is used for the main town in the series, "Queenstown" is used in a voice-over of the trailer, with a voice saying the line, "Ah, Queenstown, the millionaire's playground - where what they want, they get."

During a series of interviews leading up to the series launch, Campion never specifically referred to the series as being set in Queenstown.

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- The Southland Times

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