The thirteen-part Audible Original Podcast is a gripping supernatural murder mystery written by Mike Jones and Mike Cowap and was directed by veteran British filmmaker Bharat Nalluri whose credits include Life on Mars and Unsound.
The plot begins at the edge of an old orchard, on the grounds of the exclusive Nevermoor girls school where a teenage boy is found dead. The question is, was it murder, suicide, or something even more sinister?
Bana plays Detective Adam Durwood — a single parent who is assigned to investigate the boy’s death. As the investigation wears on, the more it seems that things just don’t add up. Meanwhile, at the centre of the mystery are three manipulative teenage girls who appear to know more than they should and who slowly start to draw Adam into a dangerous web.
Things take an even more threatening turn when Adam’s daughter, Lily, becomes friends with the Nevermoor girls and promptly begins behaving in odd ways. Suddenly she has memories of things she never did and visions of events she never saw.
As the abnormal experiences increase in frequency and it becomes clear that both Lily and Adam are in danger, the detective begins to question reality as his crime investigation evolves into something far more mysterious.
Bana, who saw massive success with his most recent film The Dry, is joined by cast members Magda Szubanski (Kath & Kim, Babe), Gary Sweet (Police Rescue, Mystery Road, Bloom) and Olivia Deeble (Home and Away, Secret Society of Second Born Royals).
The Orchard was filmed in Bana’s hometown of Melbourne at the end of 2020. The actor is now working on the ecologically themed family film Blueback, with The Dry director Robert Connolly in remote Western Australia.
Loosely based on Tim Winton’s critically acclaimed novel of the same name, Blueback tells the story of a girl who befriends a wild blue groper while scuba diving. When she discovers the fish and its kind are under threat, she takes inspiration from her environmental activist mother to face down poachers to protect the creature, marking the beginning of her life-long mission to save the world’s coral reefs.