AUSTRALIAN film star Eric Bana says he will long remember the Wimmera's "spectacular" scenery after filming his latest movie in the region.
The Dry made its world premiere at the Horsham Centre Cinema on Thursday night, a special gift for the region where the film was shot in 2019.
Bana said he glad the Wimmera had the first look at the highly-anticipated mystery drama.
"I can't quite believe we managed to pull off having the world premiere here," he told the Mail-Times on the red carpet.
"It was an idea we flew and thought, 'That probably won't happen'. But here we are.
"We're just rapt that the people of the region are the first ones in the world to see the film."
Bana said shooting The Dry in towns such as Beulah, Minyip and Jeparit was an incredible experience.
"That's the greatest part about working on a film location; you're not just there for two days, you're there for an extended period," he said.
"I think this region is something else at sunrise and sunset. That's when it really started to get under our skin.
"To see all those colours, particularly at that time of year ... it was really, really spectacular."
Bana said he also enjoyed the wide-open spaces of the Wimmera.
"I found it really, really hard going back to Melbourne," he said.
"I remember the first drive back, seeing cars in my rearview mirror and being quite annoyed by the fact there was another headlight in the distance.
"I had gotten used to these drives to and from work where there was no one around. That was just heaven for me.
"The more remote we got, the more I liked it. As we headed north from Warracknabeal up toward Hopetoun, the better it was."
Bana said he would also fondly remember the welcoming Wimmera community.
"We felt very welcome. We never felt like we were getting in people's way, which is quite rare when you're making a film," he said.
"We were using main streets of towns and people were just happy for us to be here.
"I just really hope that the locals can embrace the film, and really feel proud of it."
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