Written, directed and animated by Academy Award-winning filmmaker and
cartoonist Bruce Petty, Global Haywire is a wholly original approach to one of the most
important questions of our time. Why have we have reached the present crisis point
between East and West? Petty gathers a committee of real and animated figures to
investigate. Evidence is heard from students and luminaries such as Gore Vidal, Noam
Chomsky, Tariq Ali and Robert Fisk. A wealth of archival footage and issues from
globalisation to diminishing oil reserves and terrorism are thrown into this animated
mixing pot. "It's all beginning to look like a mad cartoon," says one character. Petty's
brilliant satirical creation suggests that madness is indeed at the heart of our global
situation, and takes just a touch of visual mayhem to put the point across.
Bruce Petty - Director Writer Animator
Bruce Petty is one of Australia's best-known political satirists and cartoonists. He
is a regular contributor to Melbourne's The Age newspaper. His film Leisure won the
Oscar for Best Animation (1976). He has published a number of books and his cartoons
have also featured in The New Yorker and Punch. He has made a number of award-
winning short films. Global Haywire is his first feature.
Claude Gonzalez - Producer
Claude Gonzalez is a director, producer and curator. His work includes arts
documentaries for Australian broadcasters ABC and SBS, plus a number of short films,
commercials and video installations. His work has appeared in retrospectives for the
Sydney Film Festival and the City of Sydney Festival. This is his first feature film as
Sam Petty - Editor Sound Designer
Sam Petty is one of Australia’s leading sound designers. Global Haywire is his
first feature as editor. He has worked on the following Australian features as sound
2006 ROMULUS, MY FATHER
2005 LITTLE FISH
Winner of IF & AFI awards for best sound THE MAGICIAN
Nominated for AFI award, best sound in a non-feature THREE DOLLARS
RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW SYDNEY AT WAR
Winner AFI award for sound
Winner ASSG awards best mix & best soundtrack Nominated IF award for best sound
Gore Vidal is an American essayist, novelist, playwright and screenwriter. Born
in 1925 in New York, Gore is a vigorous critic of the American political establishment.
Vidal’s work has focused on many themes. These include his belief that America
is an imperial nation run by powerful corporate and political insiders to the loss of a
democratic Republic where people have some political influence. Familiar Vidalian
themes also include sex, gender, and popular culture.
Vidal’s writing career began at twenty one with the publication of his novel
Williwaw based upon his military experiences in the Alaskan Harbour Detachment. A
few years later, his trailblazing novel The City and the Pillar caused uproar as the first
major American novel to feature clear homosexuality.
In the 1960s, Vidal wrote the highly successful Julian which dealt with the
apostate Roman emperor, Washington, DC about a political family during the Franklin D
Roosevelt era and the transsexual comedy Myra Breckinridge. Amongst Vidal’s
successful screenplays were The Best Man and Visit to a Small Planet which became
successful movies. In 1956, Vidal was hired as a contract screenwriter for MGM.
Vidal’s essays and novels have dealt with American history, especially with
national politics in Lincoln (1984) and Empire (1987.) Amongst Gore’s later works of
comedy and satire were Live from Golgotha: the Gospel according to Gore Vidal (1992),
and The Smithsonian Institution (1998). Vidal is a prominent critic of the George W
Bush administration believing it to have an expansionist agenda.
Noam Chomsky, born in 1928 Pennsylvania, is the Institute Professor Emeritus
of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is regarded as the
creator of the theory of generative grammar, thought of as one of the most important
contributions to linguistics made in the 20th Century.
Chomsky began to develop some of his linguistic ideas in his doctoral thesis,
expanding them in his 1957 book Syntactic Structures, perhaps his best known work in
Chomsky was part of the cognitive revolution in psychology through his review of
B F Skinner’s Verbal Behaviour. His review challenged the behaviourist approach to the
study of mind and language which dominated the 1950s. His naturalistic approach to
the study of language has also affected the philosophy of language and mind. He is
credited with the Chomsky hierarchy, a classification of languages in terms of their
Beginning with his critique of the Vietnam War in the 1960s, Chomsky has also
become widely known, especially internationally, for his media criticism and politics He
became one of the leading opponents of the Vietnam War with the publication of his
essay The Responsibility of Intellectuals in The New York Review of Books in 1967.
Chomsky is generally considered to be a key figure within the left wing of
American politics. He is widely known for his political activism and for his criticism of the
foreign policy of the United States and other governments.
Arundhati Roy is a novelist, writer and activist born in Shillong, India. In 1997
she won the Booker Prize for Fiction for her first novel, The God of Small Things, a semi
autobiographical work involving her childhood in Aymanam, Kerala. The novel was
listed as one of the New York Times Notable Books of the Year for 1997.
Roy wrote the screenplays for In Which Annie Gives it Those Ones (1989) and
Electric Moon (1992) and a television serial The Banyan Tree. She also wrote the
documentary DAM/AGE: A Film with Arundhati Roy (2002) which illustrated her work in
support of the struggle against big dams in India
Her non-fiction books have included The Cost of Living and Power Politics, under
the title The Algebra of Infinite Justice. In 2003 Roy published War Talk, which included
her essay Come September. The essay criticized corporate globalization, the war on
terrorism and the history of American intervention in Chile, Palestinian, Israeli and Iraq.
Roy is a vocal speaker against globalization, especially American foreign policy
as well as India’s nuclear weapons. She is also highly critical of India’s approach to
industrialization and rapid development.
In 2002, Roy won the Lannan Foundation’s Cultural Freedom Award for her work
and in 2004 the Sydney Peace Prize for her work in social campaigns and her advocacy
of non-violence. In January 2006 she was awarded the Sahitya Akademi award for her
collection of essays on contemporary issues, The Algebra of Infinite Justice, but she
declined to accept it in protest against the Indian Government’s policies of economic
Robert Fisk is a British journalist living in Beirut and is the Middle East
correspondent for the British newspaper The Independent. Fisk has a PhD in political
science and more than thirty years of experience in international reporting. He has
covered 1970s Belfast, the Iranian revolution, the Iran-Iraq war, the Persian Gulf War
and the invasion of Iraq where he was stationed in Baghdad filing many eyewitness
Fisk is one of the world’s most award winning foreign correspondents being
awarded the British Press Awards’ International Journalist of the Year award seven
times and two Amnesty International UK Press Awards. He is one of the few Western
journalists to have interviewed Osama bin Laden.
His best selling publications include The Point of No Return: The Strike which
Broke the British in Ulster (1975), In Time of War: Ireland, Ulster and the Price of
Neutrality, 19391945 (1983), Pity the Nation: Lebanon at War (1990) and The Great
War for Civilisation - The Conquest of the Middle East’ (2005) which was a dense and
compelling account of recent Middle Eastern history.
Fisk offers a personal analysis of the foreign affairs that he covers. His reporting
strongly criticizes Middle Eastern governments as well as what he sees as the hypocrisy
of American and British foreign policy. Fisk believes journalism should challenge
authority, especially when governments take their country into war, and that it should
monitor power and the centres of power.
George Monbiot is a journalist, author, academic, environmental and political
activist based in Great Britain who writes a weekly column for The Guardian newspaper.
Monbiot has worked for the BBC’s Natural History Unit making natural history and
environmental programs and also as an investigative journalist.
His work includes Poisoned Arrows (1989) which criticized the treatment of the
indigenous people of West Papua by the Indonesian government and Amazon
Watershed which explored the ecological and human costs of the timber industry in
Brazil. In No Man’s Land: An Investigative Journey Through Kenya and Tanzania,
Monbiot discussed the plight of nomadic people in Kenya and Tanzania.
In 2000, Monbiot published Captive State: The Corporate Takeover of Britain
which examined the role of corporate power within Great Britain and The Age of
Consent: A Manifesto for a New World Order (2003) which argued for change for the
global justice movement to lessen global inequality. Amongst many ideas was a Fair
Trade Organization which would regulate world trade to protect the economies of poorer
Monbiot’s book, Heat: How to Stop the Planet Burning (2006) focused on climate
change arguing that a 90% reduction in carbon emissions is necessary in developed
countries in order to prevent disastrous changes to the climate. In 1995vNelson
Mandela presented him with a United Nations Global 500 Award for outstanding
Tariq Ali, born in 1943, is a British Pakistani writer and filmmaker born in Lahore
who has been an ardent critic of modern neoliberal economics. He regularly writes for
the British newspaper The Guardian, Counterpunch and the London Review of Books
as well as being on the editorial committee of the New Left Review.
Ali was involved in student demonstrations against Pakistan’s military
dictatorship whilst at Punjab University. He later read Philosophy, Politics and
Economics at Oxford University and was President of the Oxford Union debating club.
He came to public attention with his arguments against the Vietnam War,
debating with figures such as Henry Kissinger and became a figurehead for critics of
American and Israeli foreign policy and opponents of American backing of military
dictatorships in Pakistan.
In the 1960s Ali was involved with New Left politics working with the New Left
Review and becoming involved with the leadership of the International Marxist Group
(IMG.) Ali was a candidate at the 1974 British general election. In 1990, he published
the satire Redemption on the inability of the Trotskyists to handle the downfall of the
In 2002 Ali published Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads and
Modernity which dealt with the foundations of Islam, putting the 9/11 attacks on America
into a historical perspective. In 2003 Ali’s Bush in Babylon criticized the 2003 invasion of
Iraq, using poetry and essays. He is also the author of Pirates of the Caribbean: Axis of
Hope (2006) which discussed Hugo Chavez as a challenger of the neoliberal consensus
and American foreign policy.
Suad Amiry, born in 1951, is an author and architect living in the West Bank
town of Ramallah. She is the founder and Director of RIWAQ, Centre for Architectural
Conservation and is involved in some major peace initiatives of Palestinian and Israeli
Amiry studied architecture at the American University of Beirut and at the
universities of Michigan and Edinburgh. She participated in the 1991-1993 Israeli-
Palestinian peace negotiations in Washington, DC and from 1994 to 1996 was assistant
deputy minister and director general of the Ministry of Culture in Palestine.
Amiry is the author of The Palestinian Village Home with Vera Tamari and the
editor of Earthquake in April which examined the effects on the Palestinian towns of
Nablus, Bethlehem, Ramallah of the Israeli Army’s re occupation and the refugee camp
She is the author of several books on architecture and her book Sharon and My
Mother-in-Law: Ramallah Diaries which provided a unique insight into life under
occupation. It has been translated into 11 languages and in 2004 was awarded Italy’s
prestigious Viareggio Versilia prize. Amiry was a member of staff at Birzeit University
until 1991 and was appointed as a vice-chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Birzeit
University in 2006.
Professor Amin Saikal is the Director of the Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
(The Middle East and Central Asia) and Professor of Political Science at the Australian
National University. His main focus lies in the politics, history, economic and
international policies of these regions. Professor Saikal has been widely published on
areas such as the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia.
His work includes The Afghanistan Conflict: Gorbachev's Options (1987); Iran's
Foreign Policy 1921-1979 (1991); Islam and the West: Conflict or Co-operation? (2003)
and Modern Afghanistan: A History of Struggle and Survival (2004.) He has also
contributed numerous features in international journals and newspapers such as the
International Herald Tribune as well as being a frequent commentator in the media on
issues relating to the Middle East and Central Asia.
Professor Saikal has been a Visiting Fellow at Princeton, Cambridge and Sussex
University as well as a Rockefeller Foundation Fellow in International Relations. He was
awarded the Order of Australia as Member of the Order (AM) in January 2006.
And the students of Lebanon, United Kingdom, United States, Egypt, Sierra
From Academy Award winning director - Bruce Petty, “The Global Haywire”
project is a documentary devised as a satirical inquiry into what now seems to be a kind
of brilliant but frightening world madness.
The issue is globalization, massive unpayable debts, the spread of nuclear
weapons, diminishing oil reserves, terrorism, religious fundamentalism, and a low
regard for our current leaders. These dilemmas are embedded in a brilliant media
providing an incoherent mix of news snapshots and entertainment.
Underlying this is a defensive, over-producing ‘West’ confronting an impatient
poverty-prone ‘East’. There is mutual fear and suspicion. We have interviewed expert
commentators, personalities and students from East and West for their analysis. All of
them are people who will have to live with these problems. The result is an alarming
We hear the story of the colonialism, brutal and exploitation upon the ‘East’. And
since nations of the ‘East’ achieved independence, military and political interventions in
the name of democracy or freedom, have perpetuated Western dominance.
Parallel to this, the interviews suggest convincingly that there are in place
economic and financial mechanisms that ensure access to global capital for the people
who designed the structure and made the rules. In essence, the ‘West’ has never
stopped colonizing the ‘East’. The ‘West’, while spreading magnificent technology, ideas
and culture everywhere, has, by ensuring continual growth, created global instability.
This is much too complex to express simply and much too serious to leave to
elite observers. Hence, the cartoonist’s inquiry.
In an attempt to present this story in an accessible way, we will use satirical
animation and voiceover in the same manner that news items are presented in political
cartoons. That is, we use entertaining graphic metaphors and verbal absurdity to
suggest what is really happening.
Director, Writer and Animator Bruce Petty
Producer Claude Gonzalez
Editing and Sound Sam Petty
Executive Producer Susan MacKinnon
Cinematography Michael Pearce
Music Elena Kats-Chernin
Narrator Tom Baker
President Robyn Nevin
Secretary Barry Otto
Committee Assistant Majella O’Shea
Committee Member 1 Juliet Darling
Committee Member 2 Winnie Shih
Committee Member 3 Sundar Ramanathaiyer
Committee Member 4 Charles Stokes
Voice Over Artists Lee Perry
Special Thanks to Sacha Horler
Researcher and Production Manager Bettina Richter
Production Co-ordinator Fiona Hercus
Post Production Supervisor Ben Blick-Hodge
Production Accountant Jocelyn Quioc
Film Research Producer Carolyn Saul
Research Assistant Kathryn Khwaja
Additional Cinematography Mike Kliem
Location Sound Michael Pearce
Make Up Artist Elaine Fitcher
Production Runner Daniel Syron
Props Nick Hocking
Sound Mixer Sam Petty
FX Editing James Andrews
Additional Editor Guy Richards
Assistant Editor Rowena Crowe
Thanks to Walter MacIntosh
Final Cut Pro Consultant Nick Meyers
Graphics Sam Petty
HD Consultant David Gross
Flash Animation Advisor Andrew Francois
2nd Unit Camera Joe Petty
Stills Craig Taylor
Legals Caroline Verge
Cut and Mixed at Big Ears
Online Edit Facility Cutting Edge
Tied to the Tracks by Dirk Kruithof
Performed by Waiting for Guinness
Butterfly by Talvin Singh
Is That What Everybody Wants? by Cliff Martinez (Fox Film Music Corp)
The Abyss by Alan Silvestri
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Zomba Music (Aust.)
Hal Leonard (Aust.)
Footage courtesy of Reuters (ITN)
The Australian War Memorial
Easy Street Archive
Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Sydney Peace Foundation
Stills Getty Images
Developed in association with
The Australian Film Commission
Developed with the assistance of
the New South Wales Film and Television Office
Troy Lum Rachel Okine Sandie Don
BIG EARS and Cutting Edge
Philip & Jan Hercus
Ollie & Sylvia Gonzalez
Pablo & Elena Gonzalez
Ralph & Emily Simon
University of Sydney
FILM FINACE CORPORATION AUSTRALIA
Bruce Petty Films 2007