The documentary

Francis Jupurrurla Kelly waited for over 25 years to tell the story of the 1928 Coniston Massacre of Warlpiri, Anmatyerr and Kaytetye people to a national audience. He felt compelled to make a documentary that is accessible to the larger national audience, so that they may know and understand with sensitivity, respect and empathy, this part of Australia’s history.

Francis was a key person in the establishment of Warlpiri Media Association in 1983. Warlpiri Media was one of the first Aboriginal media organisations in Australia. In 1984 Francis made the first "made-for-the-sceen" video for local audiences. The video was an interview on country with G. Marshall, the son of Bullfrog, whose killing of a white dingo trapper triggered the Coniston Massacre.


Francis chose David Batty of Rebel Films to co-direct this new documentary on the Coniston Massacre. They have worked together for over twenty years on different projects: starting with the making of the Manyu Wana series (the Warlpiri Sesame Street) and then the AFI award winning, and much loved, Bush Mechanics.  Francis says he chose David “ because he knows both non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal cultural ways. There isn’t anyone else I trust with such an important project. David understands and respects the Aboriginal way”. 

Their collaboration reflects the aim of the documentary: to forge a better, more equal, and cooperative relationship based on deep mutual understanding and respect, between white and black Australia.

Latest News

Coniston wins Award of Excellence

08.29am 23 July 2013

Coniston has won an Award of Excellence at the July 2013 ...CONTINUED »

Coniston broadcast on the Australia Network

17.23pm 25 June 2013

Coniston is part of the Australia Network indigenous lineup for ...CONTINUED »

Buy or Rent Coniston Film

19.22pm 30 April 2013

Coniston is now available to buy from the following ...CONTINUED »

Coniston on iView

08.46am 17 January 2013

After its screening on ABC on 14 January, Coniston is now ...CONTINUED »

Coniston screens on ABC1 TV 14 January 2013

11.19am 12 January 2013

Coniston will air for the first time on ABC1 TV on 14 January ...CONTINUED »

Coniston wins Best Docudrama Award at ATOM 2012

12.42pm 23 November 2012

Coniston was awarded the best Docudrama Award at  ATOM ...CONTINUED »

Coniston trailer online

17.18pm 03 October 2012

Haven't been able to get to see the Coniston documentary yet? ...CONTINUED »

Coniston on ABC's NT 7.30 Report

12.22pm 22 September 2012

Coniston was covered by the ABC's NT 7.30 Report on 21 ...CONTINUED »

Coniston sells out at Araluen

12.09pm 22 September 2012

It was an exciting night at Ataluen Theatre in Alice Springs on ...CONTINUED »

Coniston selected as finalist in the 2012 ATOM Awards

10.51am 04 September 2012

We are delighted that Coniston has been selected as a finalist ...CONTINUED »

Ticket sales open for Coniston documentary screening in Alice Springs

12.55pm 21 August 2012

Ticket sales have opened for the September 17 screening at ...CONTINUED »

Coniston at the Melbourne Film Festival

13.20pm 12 July 2012

Coniston has been selected for the 2012 Melbourne International ...CONTINUED »

Coniston screening sold out at Sydney Film Festival

15.15pm 11 June 2012

It was an exciting moment when Fiona Kitson and Elijah Jones ...CONTINUED »

Coniston documentary selected for the 2012 Sydney Film Festival

21.01pm 09 May 2012

We are thrilled that Coniston has been selected for the 2012 ...CONTINUED »

Coniston documentary nears completion

09.25am 19 April 2012

The Coniston documentary is in the final stages of post ...CONTINUED »

Coniston documentary gets into gear

12.11pm 18 June 2011

We've been very busy lately with finalising the financing and ...CONTINUED »

Francis Kelly receives the 2011 Tudawali Award

15.02pm 13 May 2011

Francis Jupurrurla Kelly, a key figure in the development of ...CONTINUED »

Coniston documentary : moving ahead

12.12pm 12 April 2011

The revised treatment for the Coniston Massacre documentary has ...CONTINUED »

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