Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story

THE BOX – Saturdays from 12 November, 9.30pm

Things are starting to heat up as the season starts to come to its thrilling finale. Australia’s most dangerous hit man, Chris “Mr Rent-a-Kill” Flannery, moves to Sydney. Terry Clark’s UK murder trial reaches a sensational climax, but can Allison testify against her former lover?

THE BOX – Saturdays from 27 August, 9.30pm

The true story of two unlikely partners in crime, Australian Bob Trimbole and Kiwi Terry Clark, who changed the face of organised crime in New Zealand and Australia forever.

The year is 1976. “Aussie Bob” Trimbole is in charge of the trade of marijuana in the New South Wales town of Griffith. Terry Clark, fresh from New Zealand, pays Trimbole a visit and offers to go into partnership with him, expanding his trade to high quality heroin imported from South-East Asia. This is Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story, detailing the rise of the marijuana and heroin industries in Sydney and Melbourne from 1976 to 1987, telling the story of the two frontmen “Aussie Bob” Trimbole and Terry “Mr. Asia” Clark, as well as the involvement of racing identity George Freeman.

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Underbelly actor returns to clinic

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The BOX – Sunday 17 October, 8.30pm

Aussie Bob is pressured to arrange a gangland hit on his friend and colleague, Allison. Meanwhile, paranoid and living in exile in the UK, Terry Clark must terminate his relationship with “Mr Asia”.

A Kiwi version of hit Australian crime series Underbelly could be on the way shortly with funding given by NZ On Air.

Production company Screentime has received a $20,000 cash injection from NZ On Air to investigate whether New Zealand underworld stories could be told in an Underbelly style on Kiwi screens.

“We are in the very early stages of talks with TV3. It’s very much in the inception stages,” Screentime executive director and head of production Philly de Lacey said recently.

The series would attempt to mirror the Australian Channel Nine drama which has run three seasons and has several tele-movies on the way.

The second season centred on Kiwi druglord Terry Clarke, played by actor Matt Newton, who was active in the 1970s and 80s.

Dr Greg Newbold, who now works at Canterbury University as a criminologist, said there is no shortage of stories to be told of crime in New Zealand.

Newbold would know, as he himself was involved in the heroin trade in the 1970s and served time for selling the drug. 

“I know a lot of stuff that people don’t know I know. If they are going to talk about some criminals I know, I’m always open and happy to talk,” he said.

“The quality of the programme will depend on the quality of the information.”

However, Newbold said there would be no way the producers could pursue themes of police corruption due to the lack of it in this country, compared to Australia in the past.

“There would be nothing there really of any substance. They would have to focus on some criminal stories without accusing them of something they haven’t been convicted of, if they are still alive. If they are dead they can say what they like,” he said.

Source: Herald

The BOX – Sundays from 22 August, 8.30pm

The true story of two unlikely partners in crime, Australian Bob Trimbole and Kiwi Terry Clark, who changed the face of organised crime in New Zealand and Australia forever!

The year is 1976. “Aussie Bob” Trimbole is in charge of the trade of marijuana in the New South Wales town of Griffith. Terry Clark, fresh from arriving from New Zealand, pays Trimbole a visit and offers to go into partnership with him, expanding his trade to high quality heroin imported from South-East Asia. This is Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story, detailing the rise of the marijuana and heroin industries in Sydney and Melbourne from 1976 to 1987, telling the story of the two frontmen “Aussie Bob” Trimbole and Terry “Mr. Asia” Clark, as well as the involvement of racing identity George Freeman.

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Underbelly actor Matthew Newton has been named as the new host of Australian talent show The X Factor. The actor, who played kiwi drug king Terry Clarke in the  second season of the series, will join musicians Natalie Inbruglia, Ronan Keating and Guy Sebastian on the show which is basically an American Idol spin-off.

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Bret Michaels plans TV return

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Underbelly actor leaves rehab

Underbelly actor Matthew Newton is out of rehab after spending a 28-day period in a Melbourne facility. Newton featured in the second season of the crime drama playing drug lord Terry Clarke alongside kiwi actress Anna Hutchison. The exact reason for his stay at the rehab centre was never made public.

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According to bookies, the favourites to win the 2010 Eurovision song contest are Germany and Azerbaijan. The televised talent competition takes place in Oslo in less than two weeks and with the bookies predicting the 2008 and 2009 competitions correctly, it’s difficult to argue with them.

8:30pm – Wednesday, May 20 on TV 3

It’s been an exciting, dangerous ride but this week it all comes to a dramatic conclusion when the critically acclaimed Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story finals on Wednesday, May 20th at 8:30pm on 3.

Over the last 13 weeks viewers have got to experience the true story of how two men changed the face of organised crime in New Zealand and Australia forever.

Aussie Bob Trimbole (Roy Billing) and Kiwi Terry Clark (Matthew Newton) were an unlikely pair. One an overweight Italian-Australian who loved his food and marijuana crops, the other a charming young New Zealander, in love with money, power and beautiful women.

Together, they mastermind the large-scale importation and distribution of heroin into Australia. But their good times couldn’t last forever and this week sees the end to their crime wave.

With Clark serving a life sentence for murder in the UK, the Feds are now strategising to flush out Aussie Bob from his European hideaway. But as Aussie Bob nears his end, Kiwi born actor Roy Billing says that there was more to this notorious criminal than meets the eye.

“I have tried to present Trimbole as a rounded person who had a life and a personality who just happened to earn his living through illegal means, and not as a ‘caricature’ Mafia heavy,” explains Billing.

But having to work within the confines of the script, which are, after all, based on events, the actor says that portraying the man often proved very challenging.

“The most challenging aspect has been to ensure that, over many episodes and scenes, there is continuity to the character and that he is presented as a real and rounded person.”

“The excellent scripts we have help in this aspect, but I have to constantly ask, ‘What is Bob feeling here?’, ‘How would he react to this situation?’, ‘How does this tie in with what we have already seen of him?’ etc etc.”

And as for the most memorable aspect of working on Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story, the actor reseals; “Working as a part of a team with a great cast and crew and having such great scripts.”

However there was something else that proved memorable, something that cemented Billing’s theory that Aussie Bob wasn’t just the monster he is often referred to as.

“Talking to the number of people who came out of the woodwork with personal stories about meeting or knowing Bob, and finding out that while he is alleged to have been one of Australia’s most notorious criminals, he seems to be a man who was well liked by many of those who came into contact with him.”

Make sure not to miss this unconventional criminal’s tragic ending when Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story concludes on Wednesday, May 20th at 8:30pm on 3.

8:30pm – Wednesday, May 13 on TV 3

It’s the moment of truth on the series that’s got the country talking. This week Terry Clark’s (Matthew Newton) UK murder trial reaches a sensational climax, but will Allison Dine (Anna Hutchison) testify against her former lover? Find out on the critically acclaimed Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story, screening on Wednesday, May 13th at 8:30pm on 3.

As Terry Clark awaits trial for the murder of Marty Johnstone in the UK, his former lover and second in charge of the “Mr Asia” drug syndicate Allison Dine faces the reality of testifying against the notorious criminal.

But how did a middle-class girl from Rotorua get so deep into the biggest organised crime syndicate of the 1970′s?

“I think she kind of got wrapped up by the beauty of some of the treats that were given when certain things were done,” New Zealand born Hutchison explains.

“I think Allison fell for Terry because he was quite different to what she had, and he was a bit exciting and he had this life that was so, so different to hers,” she continues.

The Kiwi actress also says that the role proved challenging and fulfilling on account of the emotional journey her character travels.

“I liked the complexities involved in Allison’s story, she says. “She has a very eventful life. The character was great, very challenging.”

However for Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story writer and producer Greg Haddrick, it was Hutchison’s combination of youth, attractiveness and innocence that made the 23-year-old the perfect person to portray Allison Dine.

“She could look innocent,” he says, “but you knew she was also smart and in particular when she falls in love with Terry you can believe that here is someone for whom she’d do anything.”

But will Allison be able to put away the man that she once would have done anything for? Find out when Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story continues on Wednesday, May 13th at 8:30pm on 3.