The director’s latest film, about an Aboriginal boy taken to a Christian orphanage, sat untouched for years – until the actor came into his orbit
Warwick Thornton still remembers the first time he saw a crucifix. After a childhood as a mischief-maker in Alice Springs, he was exiled by his mother to a remote Western Australian town and sent to a boarding school run by Spanish Benedictine monks. It was there, aged 11, that he first walked into a church and came face-to-face with the gruesome effigy towering above him.
“[I remember] seeing this man being tortured up there,” the 52-year-old says. “And being incredibly scared and fearful.”
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