VIDEO: Comedy takes a shot at Orange wineries

ORANGE’S most prominent winemakers will make cameo appearances in a new comedy series about the making of a fictional wine program.

The five-part online series PLONK, which is being produced by Condie’s Wonder Communications, is being shot at wineries throughout the state and follows a hapless crew’s efforts to produce a unique and credible wine show, with The Chaser’s Chris Taylor playing the series’ host.

The show’s co-creater/directorNathan Earl, who produced the series with Glen Condie, said the series was a “comedic love letter to NSW wine”.

“It’s a satirical comedy about the way wine is traditionally marketed,” Mr Earl said.

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“We went to all the great wine regions and were looking for wine personalities (to appear in PLONK).”

Mr Earl said he grew up in the Hunter Valley and had always wanted to make a show about wine “but it took a while to really nail a point of difference”. 

“Wine shows in general are ripe for parody,” he said.

Mr Earl said he and Mr Condie made a pilot for the series and discovered it had informally been distributed to a several winemakers who then put their hands up to be involved in the series.

“We came up and did a location scout a few weeks ago and everyone we spoke to was keen to promote wine and the Orange wine region in particular,” Mr Earl said.

Orange wine identities Murray Smith, Tom Ward, Justin Jarrett and Philip Shaw appear in the series.

The film crew arrived in Orange from Mudgee on Friday and will wrap up shooting here on Sunday.

Key funding for the series came from the tourism body Destination NSW, which Mr Earl said proved a helpful ally in helping the crew gain access to a range of locations.

“They were also really supportive and very hands-off editorially,” he said.

Minister for Tourism and Major Events George Souris said while the program gently mocked wine television shows, its heroes took an unforgettable trip through NSW and some of the country’s most beautiful scenery.

“Each episode will capture a different NSW wine destination, highlighting the quality and diversity of experiences available in the NSW wine regions, despite the presenters’ best attempts to critique the wine," he said.

The series will air in February.

tracey.prisk@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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