Transmedia production company Chocolate Liberation Front (CLF) has created Asylum: Exit Australia for SBS, which launches in conjunction with the premiere of the documentary series Go Back to Where You Came From, airing during Refugee Week on SBS One.
Go Back To Where You Came From, a three-part series which beings airing on June 21, aims to challenge perceptions of what it means to be a refugee by tasking six ordinary Australians to embark on a 25-day journey, living the experience of a refugee trying to reach Australia.
Meanwhile, CLF’s online simluation Asylum: Exit Australia flips the asylum seeker debate by imagining a political upheaval in Australia that leaves the user no choice but to flee the country.
Played in the first person, the user is now the asylum seeker, encountering danger, injustice, corruption and bureaucracy, as well as kinship and cooperation. The end goal for users is to find a safe place for themselves and their families.
Marshall Heald, manager digital media, SBS Television and Online, said, “This kind of project, which is highly relevant to the immigration debate in Australia and around the world, and also incredibly innovative, highlights SBS’s efforts to tell meaningful stories in new and interesting ways.”
Chris Sullivan from Chocolate Liberation Front added, “At this moment there is so much misunderstanding around asylum seekers. It’s a different perspective when you walk in their shoes. This interactive simulation is an incredible tool to evoke understanding of this complex issue.”
Asylum: Exit Australia was produced by CLF’s Chris Sullivan with executive producers Frank Verheggen and Dan Fill, in association with the Refugee Council of Australia, and with the support and assistance of Screen Australia’s National Documentary Program, Screen Australia’s Innovation Fund, Film Victoria and SBS Online.
Another recent SBS/CLF project “Immigration Nation” was a 2011 Webby Honoree for Best Interactive Documentary.