From the bestselling author of Wednesdays with Bob comes an intimate portrait of Indigenous actor David Gulpilil.
'David is a gateway to a history that we've so far denied and not embraced. In this country, he's more important than Ned Kelly.' Jack Thompson
It's been almost fifty years since a teenage David Gulpilil illuminated screens worldwide with his breakout role in Walkabout. It was one of the first times we'd seen an Aboriginal person cast in a significant role and only four years after Holt's referendum to alter the constitution and give Indigenous people citizenship and, subsequently, the right to vote.
Gulpilil quickly became the face of the Indigenous world to white Australian audiences. Charisma. Good looks. A competent, strong, mysterious man starring in films ranging from Crocodile Dundee to Rabbit-Proof Fence.
But what has marked Gulpilil, despite his fame and popularity, is the feeling that he's been forever stuck between two worlds: a Yolngu man, a hunter, a tracker, who grew up in the bush in Arnhem Land outside any white influence; and a movie star flitting from movie sets to festivals.
Able to exist in both worlds, but never truly home.
From the author of the bestselling Wednesdays with Bob, Derek Rielly builds a narrative around his attempt to encapsulate the most beguiling and unconventional of Australian entertainers, observing Gulpilil's own attempt to find a place in the world. With interviews from notable icons and friends - such as Jack Thompson, Paul Hogan, Phillip Noyce, Craig Ruddy, George Gittoes, Gary Sweet and Damon Gameau - this book unriddles a famous enigma at last.
'He has an extraordinary presence, what ever that word means. It's very real. Some people have it and some people don't. And David has it - he knows how to feed the camera.' Jack Thompson
David Gulpilil is a Yolngu man beloved around the world as a hunter, dancer, actor and artist. His preternatural acting in the films Walkabout, Storm Boy, Crocodile Dundee, The Tracker and Charlie's Country - for which he won the Un Certain Regard prize at Cannes Film Festival and Best Actor at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards in 2014 - has allowed Gulpilil to transmit the worlds of the First Australians to screens with unrivalled magic and melancholy, and made him an icon of cinema.
Derek Rielly is a journalist born in Perth and based in Bondi, Sydney. He is the son of a pro-wrestler father and a diplomat mother, and the creator of the four-language, pan-European magazine Surf Europe, the co-founder of Stab magazine and BeachGrit.com. His writing has appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Australian. Derek is the bestselling author of Wednesdays with Bob (with Bob Hawke). Gulpilil is Derek's second book.
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