By Ahmad Halimi
'Dive Club' is a 12-part series for Netflix and Network Ten. Shot entirely in North Queensland, the series has an incredible visual scale to it. However, with this scale comes the challenge of keeping the story focussed on our main characters, ensuring the personal and intimate stories aren’t lost. I believe I’ve done my best work so far on episode 1 of 'Dive Club', from setting up our four main characters to creating the tone and various undertones for the series.I’d like to focus on the most challenging sequence for me: the opening of the series. Here, we had to set the tone of the show, introduce and create the dynamic between the main characters, set up the underwater world and some key series plot points, and above all these, have a cyclone hit the island causing the disappearance of Lauren. This was quite a feat to put together, all before our opening titles sequence. I have an Avid bin of about 15 different versions for our opening sequence. All very different. All achieving interesting results. Ultimately I believe we settled on the best possible version.

One huge influence on me for the opening sequence was Asghar Farhadi films ('A Separation', 'About Ellie', 'The Salesman'), which are all, in one way or another, detective movies. The key element that makes his movies incredibly tense and engaging is the flow of information and clues. The audience and the characters are always in sync in terms of the clues they know. I kept this in mind throughout the series but it was especially key in the opening sequence, specifically for Lauren’s disappearance scene. We had a lot more footage which gave more clues about what happens to her. However, since our other characters cannot possibly know these clues, we decided not to show these. This puts both our characters and the audience together in the dark about Lauren’s disappearance. From this point, the audience will be actively engaged with our characters on the journey to find the truth about Lauren.

I strongly believe the audience should be respected and never underestimated, no matter their age. We have managed to achieve a certain complexity and scale in 'Dive Club', which is rare for series for the younger audiences. This complexity has been carried throughout the series by our other wonderful Editors, Charlotte Cutting and Geoff Lamb ASE.

I believe our younger audience will welcome the depth of storytelling in 'Dive Club', set in place by creator Steve Jaggi, and director Rhiannon Bannenberg. We cannot wait for the world to see 'Dive Club' when it comes out on Netflix on the 3rd of September.

Ahmad Halimi
'Dive Club' Editor

(eNews 105 - August 2021)