A Look Back at our Graphic Novel Film Fundraiser

Christine Gordon recaps last week’s fundraiser for the coming documentary film Graphic Novels! Melbourne!, which will debut at Readings Carlton in October.


Twas a wild night on the streets of Westgarth, the wind was picking up a swirl. My heart sank as I carried boxes of wonderful graphic novels into the Westgarth Theatre for the night that may end all nights.

To be frank, from the wintery depths of my heart I did think there would be myself, the filmmaker and maybe one other lonely person in attendance of the very first fundraising eve for a movie about Melbourne graphic novelists and artists. Who in their right mind would risk heading outdoors on this type of night?

Bobbing in the diminishing light I saw Bernard Caleo, of Cardigan Comics appear transcendent in his white suit carrying, as if normal, a standard lamp. Next him the filmmaker Dan Heywood, stood impressive with a ton of gear around his neck. So this may be the forum, I thought as I displayed amongst other books from the Readings collection of graphic novels copies of Nicki Greenberg’s books, Mandy Ord’s latest offering, Bruce Mutard’s past collection, the entire catalogue of Milk Shadow comics (by the by the best seller of the night was one of theirs: Walking to Japan). It all looked good, even the lamp on the stage, and now we just needed the people to come out.

readings-banner Filmmaker Dan Heywood

We needed people passionate about the lives of Melbourne artists and authors, people willing to put their money where their passion was. We wanted to raise money to support the making of a documentary about graphic novelists in Melbourne to be screened at Readings Carlton this October. To do so we needed funds to support such an ode.

Out from the chilly streets came first a musician, a projectionist and then, ladies and gentlemen as if the red wine wasn’t warming my heart enough, the people came. Soon there was only standing room, and the night was underway. There were raffles, screams, laughter, jibes and an atmosphere of collective joy as the beginnings of the film was shown, stories told and artists celebrated.

Need to know more? Stay tuned.

Graphic Novels! Melbourne! will premier at Readings Carlton in October 2012.