Warren Clarke returns home to film The Heights at Perth’s ABC Studios

Warren Clarke on the set of The Heights at the ABC Studios, East Perth. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d483860
Warren Clarke on the set of The Heights at the ABC Studios, East Perth. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d483860

A NEW homegrown TV drama starring WA-born Marcus Graham brings characters of varied cultures and classes tackling complex issues into our lounge rooms.

Rest assured, however, there’s no obvious agenda at the forefront in The Heights, says Perth co-creator, Warren Clarke, who has returned from Sydney to his home city for filming.

“It’s about telling reflective Australian stories in a PG setting: it is a family show and in terms of issues and themes it should try to spark a conversation as opposed to being a commentary on what’s going on,” he said.

“It enables a community to have dialogue about different things and have different points of views and show that that is not destructive, but actually a really positive thing.”

The drama centre on the inner-city neighbourhood of Arcadia Heights, exploring the relationships between the residents of the Arcadia social housing tower and those who live in the rapidly gentrifying community that surrounds it.

Filming is underway at the ABC studios , where a set has been custom-built of the neighbourhood, and viewers can also expect to see some of their favourite local haunts featured.

“I used to love watching TV shows shot here as a kid; obviously a lot of shows are shot on the east coast and it’s just a different view,” Clarke said.

“This is a beautiful city and we’re capitalising on that, filming at places such as City Beach and around Mt Lawley and East Perth – we’re trying to utilise the river also.”

The cast includes known actors from Aussie small-screen hits like Neighbours, Home and Away and Thank God You’re Here as well as emerging talent.

“We’ve cherry-picked a little bit; the vast majority of the cast are from WA and based here – we were really trying to support the local acting community,” Clarke said.

“It’s nice for me to come home and work here, it’s a personal thing for me to be in my home state and do a show I’m really excited about here, but I also knew what could be done in Perth.”

The Heights is anticipated to air on the ABC early next year.