Renowned actor Tiriel Mora, who played lawyer Dennis Denuto in The Castle, has breathed a heavy sigh of relief after a Junee local saved the film’s house from demolition this week.
The iconic weatherboard home is set to move to a block of land adjoining the Corowa Whiskey and Chocolate Factory thanks to a deal struck by managing director Dean Druce, and Mr Mora could not be happier.
The popular actor said his involvement with the The Castle was one of the highlights of his career, adding he felt a strong connection to the house at the centre of the iconic film.
“I’m delighted that it’s been saved and I know I’m not the only one,” Mr Mora told The Daily Advertiser.
“The Castle was one of those rare films that had real heart, you just have to protect things like that.
“It’s one of those Australian films that lives on, and that’s worth cherishing
“There are so many lines that have become a part of Australian culture, people make constant references to it.”
The renowned actor said the irony of the house being on the brink of demolition, just as it was in the film, had not been lost on him.
“It's one of those cases of life imitating art,” he said.
“It certainly would’ve been disappointing if it had been demolished, but this is a great compromise.”
Corowa Whisky and Chocolate Factory management plan to return the house to its original state and promote it as a tourist attraction, a concept which was music to Mr Mora’s ears.
“They could serve food from the movie, like meatballs and ice cream,” he said.
“They could also have a spot out the back where you can dig a whole if you want to.”
Corowa Whisky and Chocolate Factory managing director Dean Druce said the preservation and relocation of the house had created a groundswell of excitement throughout the Riverina.
The factory has been inundated with phone calls from fans of the film since the initial announcement was made earlier this week.
“People are just so excited, they want to know all about it,” Mr Druce said.
“Everyone is so happy that something is actually happening with the house, rather than all of the uncertainty that surrounded it a month ago.
“This was an opportunity that was too good to refuse.”