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From Ventura to San Luis Obispo, from Santa Barbara to Santa Maria, KCLU's in-depth, thoughtful coverage of all the news that matter to you.

Cutting-Edge 'Audio Movie' Starring John Malkovich Created By South Coast Filmmaker

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A new audio movie, starring Brian Cox and John Malkovich, has been written and directed by a South Coast resident. 

John Mawson, who lives in Ojai, is behind the cutting edge “audio movie event” Unsinkable - which is based on a true story. 

It was the ship that would not die. A cargo ship, severely damaged in battle, abandoned by its crewmembers and then later retrieved.

https://vimeo.com/426168291">Unsinkable is the true story of World War II ship, San Dimitriou and is written, co-produced and co-directed by long-time Ojai resident Mawson. 

"She was part of a convoy which was heading from the States to the U.K. in 1940," Mawson explained to KCLU News. 

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Credit KCLU News
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John Mawson of Ojai has written and directed Unsinkable

"The convoy was attacked by a German battleship, and there was only one Royal Navy ship to protect these 38 ships." 

The ship was carrying 11000 tonnes of highly explosive aviation fuel was set on fire and the crew abandoned ship into three lifeboats. 

Two of those were picked up. The third wasn't, and days later they came upon their own ship which was still on fire, "horrendously badly damaged," but hadn't sunk. 

Far from stopping production, the pandemic restrictions offered Mawson – himself a former merchant navy man, now an actor and writer -  a unique opportunity to record and produce the all-star cast of the audio movie.

"Brian Cox and John Malkovich had done masses of radio and audio work before and they love the medium so they were happy to sign up for this." 

He recorded them remotely at locations around the globe, since March. 

Mawson explained that the audio movie takes podcasts to the next level. 

"The difference is that the sound that you will hear will be every bit as good as if you were watching a blockbuster in a movie theater.

"The soundscape is going to be in a new thing called DOLBY Atmos, which is effectively three dimensional. You'll hear just as dense and fantastic a sound as if you were in a professional theater." 

The sound design and mix will be headed up by Academy and BAFTA winner Ben Wilkins and Mawson explains he will be behind making this an "immersive experience."