Film Info
Section:Family Films
Running Time:93 min.
Director:Stuart McDonald
Producer:Richard Keddie
Sheila Hanahan Taylor
Screenwriter:Peter Ivan
Cinematographer:Damian Wyvill
Editor:Cindy Clarkson
Marcus D'Arcy
Max Miller
Cast:Shane Jacobsen
Sarah Snook
Alan Tudyk
Coco Jack Gillies
Print Source:Global Screen GmbH
Note Writer:Roberta McNair


Oddball has all the elements of a classic family film and more: a lovable dog; a clever little girl; a warm, eccentric grandfather; comedy; adventure; and—penguins! Based on actual events and set against the backdrop of Australia’s wild, breathtaking coast, this is an exciting and hilarious race against time to save the endangered fairy penguin population. It’s been declining rapidly because of deadly foxes—both animal and human. Nine-year-old Olivia and her doting, chicken-farming granddad “Swampy” hatch a plan to save the flightless fowl, using Swampy’s gentle, troublemaking Maremma sheepdog, Oddball, to guard them. Olivia and Swampy must overcome a wild-eyed dogcatcher, the town council’s scheme to generate revenue using the penguins’ habitat for whale watching, and a plan afoot for Olivia and her mom Emily—the penguins’ protector—to move to New York with Emily’s American boyfriend. The colony of tiny birds stands in the way of everything. Ages 7+

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Additional Information

Stuart McDonald is best known to Australian audiences for his creative collaborations with Chris Lilley on television series such as Summer Heights High, Angry Boys, Ja’mie: Private School Girl and Jonah From Tonga. Stuart’s critically acclaimed direction landed Lilley numerous Best Actor awards and earned the show top ratings on multiple platforms. Stuart has also directed for Australian television programs such as Rush, Spirited, Tangle, Secret Life of Us, MDA and Seachange. In 2006 Stuart directed Stranded, a fifty minute coming-of-age drama film that won Best Short Film at the AFI, Dendy, IF, Film Critic’s Circle and Atom Awards. Those awards coupled with HBO acquiring Summer Heights High helped Stuart establish himself as a fresh directorial voice in the global market. In America, Stuart has directed episodes for the television series Happy Endings, Suburgatory, Super Fun Night, as well as ABC’s top- rated Blackish.