What does it take to play for your country? That’s the dream of course…
It is 2022 and the Socceroos finally managed to qualify and progress to the Round of 16 in the FIFA World Cup Qatar, after an epic struggle. Do our young players also have challenges on the world stage? Can a group of Under-11 football players from Sydney Olympic FC SAP squad take on the best clubs in Europe? A film about the multicultural history of the game in Australia, what we can learn from expert coaches in Germany, Australia and the UK, and the challenging pathway our youth players must take to reach the professional level, to become Australia’s future Socceroos and Matildas. What are the barriers to participation, threats from corruption, and how can young players feel safe and supported on their ambitious journey to success?
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The Producer acknowledges the support of Screen Australia through the Producer Equity Program.
‘O-LYM-PIC – Football Dreams’ features children who undoubtedly will become the European football stars of the future.
Ross BARNARD – Australian Screen Industry Statesman
“Merewether packed a bag, a camera, and followed her son, his team-mates, and several of the mothers and (mostly) fathers across Europe to discover from the inside and the ground up, what it takes to become a Socceroo… The documentary offers the audience the thrill all those involved are mediating: they love the game, they are so proud of their children and they are on an adventure… both players and their parents experience the highs and lows, especially for a team used to being the big fish but now realising it was a small pond… Merewether leaves the audience with what she values most about the game: child welfare, passion, and fair play.“
Lisa French – Dean of RMIT University’s School of Media and Communication and Professor of Screen and Media.
From Belmore to the Bundesliga.
When filmmaker Janet Merewether set out to film an ambitious group of 10-year-old underdogs from Sydney Olympic FC on a whirlwind tour, competing against junior football teams from the powerhouses of the Bundesliga and top European clubs such as Manchester United, Ajax and Benfica at the prestigious Legia Cup, little did she expect that she would also be documenting the involvement of (now former) Club President Bill Papas, who is making headlines for allegedly defrauding Westpac Bank for hundreds of millions of dollars. Who knew? Certainly not the parents.
Essential viewing for all aspiring football players and sports fans, featuring insights from leading coaches such as Schalke’s Sam Farokhi, Hertha Berlin’s Florian Kliche, Manchester United’s Eamon Mulvey, former Socceroo captain Alex Tobin OAM, former Liverpool, Crystal Palace and Perth Glory player Nick Rizzo, and Sydney Olympic’s CEO John Boulous, ‘O-LYM-PIC – Football Dreams’ is a story of professional pathways, youth football and the multicultural history of ‘the world game’ in Australia. The film features exclusive behind-the-scenes footage from top Bundesliga clubs, and competitions which were shut down during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Why does our underdog national team struggle on the world stage, how can the sport be fairer and more affordable, and what can we learn from the expert coaches in Europe to raise the quality and accessibility of the game?
A story about determination, ambition, and integrity in elite sport, but above all, this is a film about the dream of young athletes to represent their country and to play the game they love.
© Screen Culture / Janet Merewether
Selected for the prestigious Paladino D’Oro Sport Film Festival Italy.
Awarded SPECIAL PRIZE as finalist in BEST FOOTBALL FILM CATEGORY.
Sydney Olympic FC players and parents
Featuring interviews with leading coaches and former players including:
John Boulous (Former Sydney Olympic FC CEO)
Sam Farokhi (FC Schalke 04 Knappenschmiede coach)
Florian Kliche & Michael Dober (Trainers – Hertha BSC Berlin)
Gerald Prell (Deutsch-Tschechische Fußballschule)
Nick Rizzo (former player Sydney Olympic, Liverpool, Crystal Palace, Ternana, Perth Glory)
Tom Stuckey (RB Leipzig Administration and Organisation Nachwuchsbereich)
Alex Tobin OAM (Adelaide City, former Socceroo captain and TD FNSW, Hills United)
Director, Producer, Writer – Janet Merewether
Cinematographer & Designer – Janet Merewether
Editors – Walter McIntosh & Andrew Arestides with Janet Merewether.
Additional editing – Peter Humble
Music – Dappled Cities, Apodimi Compania
Sound Design – Liam Egan
Mix – Rob Sullivan
Music Licensing – Kim Green, Music Licensing
Conform and Grade – Roen Davis, CBD Central Business Digital
Olympic soccer juniors take on Europe
Almanac Film: November 22, 2022 by haysoc (Roy Hay – Football Historian)
NOV – O-LYM-PIC Football Dreams nominated for best Football film internationally, at the Paladino D’Oro Sport Film Festival
Neos Kosmos – by Iris Papathanasiou 5 November 2022
O-LYM-PIC FOOTBALL DREAMS – FROM BELMORE TO THE BUNDESLIGA
Sydney Arts Guide – David Kary 9 November 2022
NOV – SOCCEROOS THROUGH TO ROUND OF 16 for FIRST TIME SINCE 2006
OCT/NOV – O-LYM-PIC – Football Dreams – in cinemas nationally.
OCTOBER – Sydney United 58 vs Macarthur FC to go head to head in Australia Cup Final
JUNE – SOCCEROOS THROUGH TO FIFA WORLD CUP™ 2022!
AUGUST – Olympic Football Dreams has been selected for the prestigious Paladino D’Oro Sport Film Festival, Palermo, Italy, November 2022.
Featuring valuable insights and interviews with some of Australia, Germany and the UK’s leading youth coaches and former players, ‘O-LYM-PIC – Football Dreams’ features children who undoubtedly will become the European football stars of the future.
FIND A SCREENING
Contact the filmmaker to book screening at a cinema, club, or venue near you.
Saturday November 19 (4.30pm)
Sunday November 20 (2.30pm)
RIVERSIDE THEATRE PARRAMATTA – Corner of Church and Market Streets
Sunday November 20
Wallis Cinemas – Mitchum
Located in: Mitcham Square Shopping Centre
Address: Level 1 Mitcham Shopping Centre, 119 Belair Rd, Torrens Park SA 5062
Wallis Cinemas – Mt Barker
Address: 17 Adelaide Rd, Mount Barker SA 5251
Sunday November 27
Wallis Cinemas – Noarlunga
Address: 38-42 David Witton Dr, Noarlunga Centre SA 5168
Saturday 26th November 2022, 10:30 am
The Backlot Perth, WA
21 Simpson Street West Perth, WA 6005
Great for kids and families as well as football players and fans
Booking Link via EventBrite
World Premiere film launch
MONDAY October 24, 2022
SPECIAL FILMMAKER SOIREE with cast and crew!
RANDWICK RITZ SYDNEY – 45 St. Pauls Street Randwick (02) 8324 2500
SEASON FROM THURS October 27
RANDWICK RITZ SYDNEY – 45 St. Pauls Street Randwick (02) 8324 2500
CLASSIC CINEMAS MELBOURNE – 9 Gordon Street Elsternwick (03) 9524 7900
LIDO CINEMAS MELBOURNE – 75 Glenferrie Road Hawthorn (03) 8658 0000
CAMEO CINEMAS MELBOURNE – 1628 Burwood Hwy, Belgrave (03) 9754 7844
Contact the filmmaker
Janet Merewether, Screen Culture Pty Limited
Dr. Janet Merewether is an award-winning filmmaker, media artist, designer, and academic.
Her film, digital art, and documentary works produced by Go Girl Productions and Screen Culture include Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life and Maverick Mother, garnering numerous Australian and international prizes including ATOM, IF, AFI, and TIDF Awards. Her films and videos have won awards at the Sydney Film Festival and Videobrasil, have enjoyed retrospectives in Taipei, Berlin, Boston, and Australia, as well as being invited to the New York Film Festival, New Directors/New Films MoMA, Tampere, Uppsala, EMAF, Impakt, Sheffield Doc/Fest, DOK Leipzig, and TIDF.
Her feature ‘Reindeer in my Saami Heart’ was nominated for two ATOM Awards (Best Documentary, Best Indigenous Resource) and Best Documentary Script at the AWGIE Awards. The documentary was selected for Margaret Mead FF NY, and enjoyed a theatrical season at Palace cinemas.
Commissions and sales include SBS, ABC, RTP, TVE, Arte/ZDF.
A graduate of the AFTRS, Merewether completed her doctoral degree at UTS in 2008 on the subject of innovative hybrid documentary and continues to explore new visual strategies in television, media art and feature documentary.
ABOUT SCREEN CULTURE
Screen Culture Pty Limited produces quality creative film, television, books and media art projects for Australian and International audiences.
Screen Culture, founded by award-winning writer/ director/ producer Janet Merewether in 2007, is engaged in the production of visually creative, quality long-form documentary and media for the Australian and International marketplace. Screen Culture’s productions are distinctively provocative, progressive and playful.
The company promotes the creative expression of ideas through the integration of sophisticated visual design with compelling storytelling. Documentary projects include Maverick Mother (2007), Reindeer in my Saami Heart (2016), O-LYM-PIC – Football Dreams (2022)