April, 2019

Midnight Oil documentary to be released

A documentary chronicling Midnight Oil’s success is set to have a limited Australian release.A new documentary about Midnight Oil is set to be released featuring unseen footage of the band at the height of their fame.
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Midnight Oil 1984, made by Melbourne director Ray Argall, follows the band as they became one of the biggest musical groups in the country while juggling frontman Peter Garrett’s first foray into politics.

The film gets up close and personal with the Oils, showing the band behind the scenes while also featuring performances from some of their famous shows.

There’s footage of the band performing in packed venues at the beginning of their career, with condensation dripping from the walls, and where Rob Hirst has nailed his drum-kit to the floor.

Audiences will see the band’s personal struggles, particularly as they juggle their music career while Garrett goes for a seat in the Senate as a member of the Nuclear Disarmament Party.

The beloved band reformed last year for a world tour, selling out gigs in Australia and overseas, including massive concerts in Sydney’s Domain and Melbourne’s Myer Music Bowl, and a special benefit gig in Cairns in aid of the great Barrier Reef.

Midnight Oil 1984 will have a limited release in select Australian cinemas from May 10 and tickets are on sale from midnightoil1984南京夜网.au

Australian Associated Press


‘Honk for equal pay’: United Voice union rally has drivers blaring

‘Honk for equal pay’: United Voice union rally has drivers blaring BIG STEPS: Labor state MPs Kate Washington and Tim Crakanthorp, with childcare workers and supporters including Bianca Guillaume (next to Mr Crakanthorp) in Civic Park on Tuesday evening.
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TweetFacebookCAR horns blared continuously along King Street next to Civic Park on Tuesday evening when the United Voice union asked motorists to hit their horns in support of a campaign to win higher wages for childcare workers.

The protest was attended by about 50 childcare workers and supporters, together with Labor state MPs Kate Washington and Tim Crakanthorp.

United Voice wants a 30 per cent pay increase for childcare workers but failed after a long effort to win such an increase through the Fair Work Commission, which dismissed the union’s case last month.

Read more: Early childhood education staff walk off the job

As a result, the union called a nationwide stoppage on Tuesday, seeking public support for their campaign.

Warners Bay childcare worker Bianca Guillaume told the rally that childcare workers deserved professional wages and professional recognition from the federal government.

Describing childcare workers as “educators who have dedicated their lives to creating a better future for children”, Ms Guillaume said it was time to “stand together and demand results”.

When the nationwide series of rallies was announced, the union’s assistant national secretary, Helen Gibbons, said early childhood educators had “a huge responsibility caring for and educating the very youngest members of our community”.

“Yet they can be paid as little as $21 an hour,” Ms Gibbons said.

Read more: This state government response was a surprisebut there is still a long way to do, advocate says

“A responsible government would have already stepped in and fixed this appalling inequity. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Education and Training Minister SimonBirmingham have consistently passed the buck. This government has no real plan to deliver equal pay for Australia’s early educators.”

But the federal government has ruled out intervening in the pay push, with Senator Birmingham responding to the union campaign by saying that many centres already paid above-award wages.

“I expect all early learning and childcare centres to value their employees and pay them as much as they can afford,” Senator Birmingham said.

“Many already do pay above the award. The role of the government is not to run those centres but to help families access affordable care.”


Academy takes no action against chief

The academy behind the Oscars will not act against chief John Bailey over a sex harassment claim.The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which hands out the Oscars, will not take action against its president John Bailey and has ended its investigation into a sexual harassment allegation against him, the organisation says.
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The academy began an investigation when it received a complaint against Bailey from an unidentified individual on March 13, the organisation said in a statement on Wednesday.

The membership and administration committee “unanimously determined that no further action was merited on this matter. The findings and recommendations of the committee were reported to the Board which endorsed its recommendation. John Bailey remains President of the Academy,” it said.

In a memo sent to academy staff, Bailey said allegations in Hollywood trade publications that he tried to touch a woman inappropriately a decade ago on a movie set were untrue, Variety reported on Saturday.

Bailey, a cinematographer whose credits range from Groundhog Day to How to Be a Latin Lover, said in the memo that media reports describing complaints to the academy were false and served only to tarnish his 50-year career, Variety reported.

Australian Associated Press


Watts adds sparkle to ACT Cartier coup

Hollywood actress Naomi Watts has launched the National Gallery of Australia’s Cartier exhibition.In an already sparkling environment, Hollywood actress Naomi Watts shone as she spoke of one of the world’s most prestigious jewellery empires.
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Wearing some precious Cartier pieces, Watts was on hand as the National Gallery of Australia prepared to throw open its doors to a new and different type of exhibition.

From Friday, visitors with an eye for beautiful “bling” can treat themselves to a walk-through of 300 Cartier pieces, from the delicate to the magnificent.

They have graced the necks, wrists and heads of royalty and the rich and famous. Now they are waiting for a new audience.

“We’ve seen them in movies, these pieces – incredible pieces – in paintings – they’re part of our travelling through history,” Watts told reporters at the preview in Canberra on Wednesday.

“There is nothing quite like seeing them up close and this particular selection of pieces is quite astounding.”

Watts says she was dazzled by the display, which includes historic pieces on loan from the British royal family.

Amongst the jewels is the Queen’s ‘Halo’ tiara worn by the Duchess of Cambridge when she married Prince William.

Three of the Queen’s favourite pieces are featured in the collection, as well as Princess Grace of Monaco’s 10.48 carat engagement ring and Elizabeth Taylor’s stunning ruby and diamond necklace, which was a gift from her third husband Mike Todd.

“You see not only these fantastic pieces, but the story behind who wore them and when and what was happening at that time, and that just really makes it so much more powerful,” Watts said.

Cartier’s director of image, style and heritage Pierre Rainero believes there are a few reasons why the Queen was willing to lend pieces to the Canberra institution, especially because it was in Australia.

“I think also since we have been the official supplier to the royal family since 1904 there is a special relationship I guess between Cartier and the royal family in Great Britain,” he said.

The rich colours of Singer sewing machine heiress Daisy Fellowes’ famous ‘Tutti Fruitti’ necklace are tucked alongside pieces Wallis Simpson was gifted by her husband the Duke of Windsor, as well as Mexican actress Maria Felix’s crocodile necklace, featuring more than 1000 emeralds.

Gallery director Gerard Vaughan describes the exhibition, which runs until July 22, as ambitious.

“There were many things we asked for that we really thought we weren’t going to be offered on loan and here they are for you to see,” he said.

Watts joked she would be too scared to own many of the jewels, but she loved the bracelet she was able to wear.

The Academy Award-nominated actress said she hopes to be back Down Under to film soon.

“I can’t give you exact dates but there’s something in the works,” she said.

Australian Associated Press


ACCC seeks feedback on Saputo’s new Murray Goulburn plans

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is giving the dairy industry a week to comment on Saputo’s plans to sell the Koroit milk factory as soon as it takes over Murray Goulburn’s processing assets.
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After failing to convince the ACCCits ownership of MG’s Koroit plant would not be detrimental tofarmgate milk competition in Victoria’s Western District, Saputo Inc has agreed to cull the site from the $1.3 billion portfolio it buys from the financially troubled dairy co-operative.

The Canadian giant already owns Australia’s biggest dairy processing plant, the Warrnambool Cheese and Butter factory, at nearby Allansford.

MG’s farmer shareholders vote on April 5 on whether to follow their board recommendation toacceptSaputo’s offer for the co-op’s seven factories and related assets and liabilities, including the powerful Devondale brand.

MG plans to distribute about two-thirds of the $1.31b sale proceeds to its unit trust shareholders, amounting to80 cents for each share.

Further payments are possible depending on legal action still hanging over the co-operative after its 2016 farmgate milk payment collapse and subsequent share price free-fall.

About $114 million in sale proceeds will also be made inmilk payments to MG suppliers, including step-up payments on current farmgate milk prices.

Mick Keogh, ACCC Fonterra not in the raceFonterra already owns the Warrnambool district’s third significant milk plant at Dennington, just 15kms west of WCB’s site, and another at Cobden, 45km to the north.

“The idea is not to reduce competition from three players to two –it would be inconsistent to block Saputo’s ownership of Koroit and then turn around and accept Fonterra,” Mr Keogh said.

Other overseas dairy players are, however, likely to be considered as potential buyers for Koroit, a significant milk plant in the heart of Australia’s most productive dairy country.

China’s Yili Industrial Group from Inner Mongolia, the French-owned Parmalat and Lactalis companies and Singaporean-owned Goodman Fielder group were among previous offshore contenders for MG’s assets before Saputo got the green light.

A host of domestic players, including Bega Cheese, are also likely candidates.

“We’ve had no indication as to who may be a potential buyer, although if overseas companies are involved the Foreign Investment Review Board will seek an ACCC opinion on competition issues before making its recommendation to the Treasurer,” Mr Keogh said.

Koroit decisionno surpriseMeanwhile, he said despite both Saputo and MG earlier trying to convince the regulator there were no competition issues likely to emerge if Koroit remained part of Saputo’s empire, “neither party seemed too surprised” by the ACCCsuggesting the plant be divested to another buyer.

“I think there was some expectation the farmgate milk price would be a competition issue –they moved pretty swiftly to find an alternative once concerns were raised,” he said.

Murray Goulburn Chairman, John Spark

“We’ve certainly had no indication from either company that divesting Koroit will delay the MG asset sale or create any of the industry uncertainty some suggested might happen if the whole deal didn’t happen as originally proposed.”

Co-op can’t surviveHowever, the hopes of other MG suppliers foran alternative to selling all the co-op’sassets, or at least for it to remainan active farmer-owned business, were quashed by independent experts this week.

Advisory firm Grant Samueltold shareholders Saputo’s total asset takeoverwas still the best deal for suppliers and listed unit holders.

“A stand-alone strategy that aimed to preserve an independent MGwould involve unacceptable risks,”Grant Samuel’s report said.

‘‘There would be a real prospect of further milk losses taking MGpast a tipping point that would precipitate loss of financier support and wholesale destruction of equity value.’’

MG chairman, John Spark, said investorsfaced the prospect of “substantial loss of value in the near term and risk the viability of the business in the medium term” unless they could inject a substantial amount of fresh cash into the business.

“I acknowledged some disappointment among many of our shareholders with the commercial position MG is currently in,” he said.

Since the 2016 farmgate price crash MG’s milk receivals have halved, putting it under morefinancial stress as it faces big debt costs incurred in a bold expansion of export and domestic production prior to its partial stock market listing in 2015, and after the $500m capital injection.

The Land