Shane Jacobson in character as Kenny.
Shane Jacobson in character as Kenny. News Ltd Archive

Kenny masterminds working on new movie, Sibling Rivalry

THERE'S a smell in here that will outlast religion.

Eleven years after Australians caught a whiff of those immortal words and fell in love with portaloo king Kenny, the brothers behind that $8 million box office hit are finally making another movie together.

Shane and Clayton Jacobson have reunited to play bickering brothers in Sibling Rivalry, which is currently filming in Bungal, a farming community part way between Melbourne and Ballarat.

"Kenny was the catapult - we both went off and took advantage of whatever came along,” elder brother Clayton told News Corp Australia on the set of the new film.

"But always, constantly, we were talking about doing stuff together. This project came along and it was perfect timing.”

Red Ball. Shane and Clayton Jacobson.  Picture: Julie Kiriacoudis
Brothers Shane and Clayton Jacobson. Julie Kiriacoudis

Two weeks into their five-week shoot, the Sibling Rivalry set is filled only with laughter.

"No one can argue like siblings, because you have all of their history as a great memory or incredibly good ammunition,” Shane said.

"It's going to be a great ride,” Clayton added. "We're building some fantastic memories here. If I never speak to Shane again, at least we had this.”

The dark comedy follows the brothers' plot to take their stepfather, the main beneficiary of their dying mother's will, out of play.

"It's a film about two brothers that go to enormous lengths to protect their inheritance. But the funny thing is we haven't had to do much of a pitch, because as soon as we say the name of the film, Sibling Rivalry, and that I'm co-starring in it with Shane, everyone goes: 'I'm in!' We literally don't get to say much more than that,” Clayton laughed.

Shane, who since Kenny has gone on to star in the likes of Oddball, The Bourne Legacy, The Dressmaker and TV series The Time Of Their Lives, thinks the new movie will "surprise a lot of people”.

"Because it's not another Kenny, it's a very different beast,” he said.

Improved grading version of earlier pictureShane (left) and Clayton Jacobson as Terry and Jeff, brothers who go to extreme lengths to protect their inheritance, in a scene from film Sibling Rivalry.Film is shooting on location in Bungal, Victoria, directed by Clayton Jacobson, and will open in cinemas 2018
Shane (left) and Clayton Jacobson as Terry and Jeff, brothers who go to extreme lengths to protect their inheritance, in a scene from film Sibling Rivalry.

Clayton, who is also directing Sibling Rivalry, for a time considered not acting in it. He credits Jane Campion and her miniseries Top of the Lake: China Girl, which recently debuted in Cannes to rave reviews, for changing his mind.

"She cast me in Top Of the Lake 2 with a role that is in each episode, so I got to spend quite a lot of time really just concentrating on acting. It gave me the confidence to go well, maybe it's worth doing.”

Most of Sibling Rivalry is being shot on one property, owned by a retired meteorologist whose treasure trove of rusty old car parts and restored antique radio sets have become a part of the movie.

While largely a two-hander for the Jacobsons, it will also feature Lynette Curran as the ailing mother, Kym Gyngell as the stepfather and Shane's Oddball co-star Sarah Snook.

"Audiences will be very happy to see someone a little bit thinner come into the scene, won't they?” asked Clayton.

"Not only that,” replied Shane, "the crew will finally be able to see the house we're filming in - they can't see what's in the background because we're both in frame.”

As ever with the Jacobsons, Sibling Rivalry is a full family affair.

The brothers are living in the same house during the shoot - "Shane cooks for me at night while I'm working on the next day's script,” said Clayton - and Clayton's son Jesse, who played Kenny's son all those years ago, is working on the crew.

"He'll be 21 in a week,” Clayton said of his boy. "He doesn't look anything like he looked in Kenny - he looks like a Viking now.”

Sibling Rivalry will reach cinemas in 2018.