Alice Garner

“Elissa is quite self-possessed and prepared to stand up for herself and for Billy. What’s important about the relationship between Elissa and Billy is that Billy is a very young man and he’s still open to influence, particularly from other, older men. I think Elissa’s concern is that he not be moulded by them into a kind of hard and uncommunicative man, which is what those older men seem to her to be.

My character was not a mother in the first script that I read but, being a breast-feeding mother, I brought Ted to the rehearsals in Jindabyne. Bea, the scriptwriter, was quite keen on him, and on the second day she came up and said, ‘I want Ted to be in the film.’ So Simon Stone and I had to sit down and figure that one out—whose child is he? It actually enriched our characters and our relationship a lot.

Ray doesn’t want people to think about their performance too much, he just wants it to happen as spontaneously as possible. When you’re performing with a baby it means that you’re not thinking about yourself. I had one scene when I had to perform without Ted and I felt quite bare.”

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