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Outreach   /  Bessie Byrne

Tunnel Vision

Stand Up. Be Heard. Make History.


Impact areas







  • DIRECTOR Ivan Hexter

  • PRODUCER Bessie Byrne



Tunnel Vision tells the extraordinary story of a community that stood up, found its voice and through through frontline activism made history by stopping a massive toll road project.

Interviews with key activists support the unfolding story of a remarkable citizen’s movement where civil disobedience, savvy social media strategies and direct action undermined a government spin campaign, challenged vested interests, excited mass media, confronted police and won.

This historical account of an important time in Australian politics, explores themes of empowerment and collective activism and why they might be vital elements for a healthy democracy.

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43.90% funded
  • $10,000.00

  • $4,390.00

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Donations to date $4,390.00

Issue Summary

A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing

Tunnel Vision is a documentation of the communities that came together to fight an $18 billion toll road that would have significantly changed Melbourne.

The campaign was a multi-faceted fight for transparency and more equitable, progressive and environmentally friendly outcomes. The management was corrupt, the business plan was flawed and there have been numerous calls for an inquiry into how the project got so close to being built.

The film looks at the themes of sustainability, urban planning, healthy cities, environment outcomes, economics, passion, community activism and much more.


What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?

Our government is failing us over and over again when it comes to the big issues of the 21st century; sustainability and equality. This film is a roadmap for change. Using the case study of the successful East West Link campaign it explores how people can make a difference to the issues the believe in if they're willing to fight. The people that came together to stop the East West link found a community and purpose and they won. We need more of that.


What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?

It is important for us as filmmakers to ensure there us a comprehensive public account of the multi faceted, multi year campaign to stop the East West Link. The campaigners were not just fighting to stop a toll road - they were fighting to;
stop unethical spending of public funds
for equitable transport options for our city
for more environmentally friendly solutions
for respect for people with no access to housing
for democracy.


How will this documentary achieve its outcomes?

This documentary has a strategic plan to create supplementary resources, build momentum and distribute to relevant groups and students.


How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?

We have partnered with a number of community organisations who are doing impact screenings of the film across Australia. We are working with these groups to establish what audiences are interested in and to ensure the film is a useful resource. We also have a number of education partners who are helping in the development of study resources and distribution to schools and universities.

Audience Engagement and Social Impact

What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?

We hope viewers are inspired to stand up for what they believe in by participating in non-violent direct action.

Measurement and Evaluation

What is the projects indicators for success?

Essentially the impact goal of the film is to raise awareness around the power of collective action and individual agency.

As this is a historical account of a successful campaign, we are promoting it as an opportunity to learn and be inspired to transpose those learnings onto other issues. Hence, the impact vision is hard to measure.

We have already been successful in a number of festivals both in Australia and Internationally and have a growing network of supporters. The film has received media attention and critical acclaim.

We have a target number of schools that we would like to obtain a copy of the film and we are building partnerships with universities across Australia.

We will conclude our work on this project when schools, universities and community groups have easy access to the film and resources and when our target numbers of engagements are complete.