Sam Neill, Judy Davis and Gillian Armstrong

My Brilliant Career stars Sam Neill and Judy Davis sit listening to director Gillian Armstrong as they sit on fold-up chairs on location at Michelago.
Sam Neill, Judy Davis and Gillian Armstrong
Margaret Fink
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This serendipitous shot captured by photographer David Kynoch depicts the transitional stage where actors Sam Neill and Judy Davis are assuming their characters and director Gillian Armstrong is describing her vision for the shoot.

The filming schedule for My Brilliant Career (Gillian Armstrong, Australia, 1979) entailed a 45-minute drive from the motel accommodation to a homestead in Michelago each day and a ten-and-three-quarter hour union-regulated workday. There was a six-day week with Sundays off, with each day's shoot taking up about eight hours.

For the producer (Margaret Fink) and director, the days merged into late nights with rushes to watch, and logistical and artistic planning for the weeks ahead.