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The name Julian Assange carries some fairly large baggage these days, but before his involvement in Wiki-Leaks ignited a worldwide freedom of speech discussion, at some point in the past, Assange was just a teenager dabbling in the murky world of computer hacking in Melbourne.

Underground, the new film by Australian filmmaker Robert Connolly (The Boys, Three Dollars, Balibo) aims to shine a light on Assange’s formative years.

In 1989, Assange (then known as ‘Mendax’), and two friends formed a group called the ‘International Subversives’. Young, savvy, and flying the freedom of information flag, the group quickly landed in the eyes of the US Government, who perceived them as a major threat to international security – they broke into some of the world’s most powerful and secretive organisations, looking at covert information but not stealing it. The rest, as they say, is history.

The all-star Australian cast includes Rachael Griffiths, Anthony LaPaglia and Alex Williams as Julian Assange. A limited series of special screening events are set to occur with the tour beginning in Melbourne at Cinema Nova, before heading around the country.

Tuesday 19th March, features a ‘meet the filmmaker’ panel featuring film editor Andy Canny, executive producer Tony Ayres and music supervisor Jemma Burns, who will discuss the film making process with director Robert Connolly.

Wednesday 20th March follows with a ‘cryptoparty’ where audiences are invited to bring in a portable computer along to the session and learn how to be anonymous online.

Thursday 21st March sees the ‘directing the actor’ seminar, followed by a discussion with Underworld stars Alex Williams and Laura Wheelwright.

Friday 22nd March closes with a presentation by The ‘Wikileaks Australian Citizens Alliance Political Forum’ with Sam Castro (WACA Co-founder), Greg Barns (Australian Lawyers Alliance) and Daniel Matthews (WikiLeaks Co-founder) joining director Robert Connolly, to discuss the legacy of Wiki-Leaks.

Full details and ticket information can be found at cinemanova.com.au

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