Boy Swallows Universe: All The Information You Need to Know About The Series

In the face of a tumultuous upbringing, Eli defies the odds to carve a positive path for himself. His stepfather deals drugs, his mother battles addiction, his elderly babysitter recently completed a 25-year prison sentence, and his brother, a poetic clairvoyant with selective mutism, adds another layer of complexity.

As Eli confronts the harsh realities that threaten his family, he endeavors to navigate life by following his heart and grappling with the true essence of being a good person. “Boy Swallows Universe,” a compelling coming-of-age crime thriller series, is helmed by directors Bharat Nalluri (known for “Shantaram”), Jocelyn Moorhouse (renowned for “The Dressmaker”), and Kim Mordaunt (“The Rocket”).

Boy Swallows Universe All The Information You Need to Know About The Series

The series features an impressive cast including Travis Fimmel, Phoebe Tonkin, Emmy nominee Simon Baker, and Sophie Wilde. The creative vision is brought to life by the talented pen of John Collee (“Hotel Mumbai”), with executive producers Andrew Mason and Troy Lum at the helm.

When will Boy Swallows Universe be released?

Boy Swallows Universe was released on January 11, 2024, so you can already watch it on Netflix! It’s a limited series with all episodes available to stream right now. You can find it by searching for its title on Netflix or simply click on this link:

Where can I find the trailer for Boy Swallows Universe?

You Can Watch The Trailer For Boy Swallows Universe On YouTube

Who’s in the cast of Boy Swallows Universe?

  • Felix Cameron (Penguin Bloom) as young Eli Bell
  • Zac Burgess (One Night) as older Eli Bell
  • Lee Tiger Halley (Crazy Fun Park) as August “Gus” Bell, Eli’s older brother
  • Travis Fimmel (Raised by Wolves, Vikings) as Lyle Orlik, Gus and Eli’s stepdad
  • Phoebe Tonkin (Babylon, Transfusion) as Frankie Bell, Gus and Eli’s mom
  • Simon Baker (Breath, The Mentalist) as Robert Bell, Gus and Eli’s dad
  • Bryan Brown (Gods of Egypt, Cocktail) as Slim Halliday, Gus and Eli’s babysitter, who’s also a convicted murderer
  • Sophie Wilde (Everything Now, Talk to Me) as Caitlyn Spies, a news reporter
  • Anthony LaPaglia (Florida Man, Without a Trace) as Tytus Broz, who owns the prosthetics factory where Lyle works
  • Christopher James Baker (True Detective, Ozark) as Ivan Kroll, Tytus’ right-hand man
  • Deborah Mailman (2067, Offspring) as Poppy Birkbeck, a guidance counselor
  • HaiHa Le (Back to the Rafters) as Bich Dang
  • Adam Briggs (Black Comedy) as Alex Bermuda, Eli’s pen pal

What drew me most to Lyle is his compassionate nature,” shared Fimmel, the actor portraying Lyle, in a conversation with Netflix. “He consistently strives to do what he believes is in the best interest of his family, even if it means embarking on unconventional paths at times.”

What happens in Boy Swallows Universe?

Set in the gritty suburbs of Brisbane in 1985, middle schooler Eli Bell (portrayed by Cameron) and his older brother, Gus (played by Tiger Halley), navigate their working-class neighborhood alongside their mom, Frankie (played by Tonkin), and stepdad, Lyle (played by Fimmel).

Eli, determined to make the best of his situation, seeks guidance from unexpected sources – a kind-hearted convicted felon (Brown) serves as his mentor, while life advice comes from a pen pal currently incarcerated (Briggs).

However, the challenges at school, courtesy of bullies, and tensions with his stepdad, Lyle, make Eli’s journey far from easy. Pressured into mischief at school and anxious about Lyle potentially returning to drug dealing, Eli investigates his stepdad’s actions, fearing his mother’s relapse into addiction.

This exploration entangles him in the criminal underbelly of the town. “Boy Swallows Universe” unfolds Eli’s tumultuous yet occasionally enchanting teenage years as he stumbles through the complexities of adolescence and strives for adulthood.

“One of the key things [Dalton] conveyed to me… was that at its core, this is a tale about a boy’s deep love for his mother,” shared production designer Michelle McGahey with Netflix.

Boy Swallows Universe All The Information You Need to Know About The Series

Is Boy Swallows Universe based on a book?

Indeed, the television series is an adaptation of the highly acclaimed semi-autobiographical novel, “Boy Swallows Universe,” penned by the accomplished author and journalist Trent Dalton.

Discussing the adaptation process, Lum, one of the series producers, shared insights with Netflix, emphasizing the distinctive tone of the novel. He explained, “The tone [of the book] is very unique, and whenever we felt like we were drifting from that tone, we just thought about Trent as a person.”

Lum highlighted Trent’s spirit, positivity, love of life, and his remarkable ability to find the silver lining in every experience. “That’s what ‘Boy Swallows Universe’ is,” Lum added, “a joyful expression of dark times.”

Frequently Asked Questions (Faq)

Q1: What is “Boy Swallows Universe”?

A: “Boy Swallows Universe” is a coming-of-age crime thriller series set in 1985 Brisbane, adapted from the bestselling semi-autobiographical novel by Trent Dalton.

Q2: Who are the main characters in the series?

A: The series features characters such as Eli Bell, his older brother Gus, their mom Frankie, and stepdad Lyle, portrayed by actors Cameron, Tiger Halley, Phoebe Tonkin, and Travis Fimmel, respectively.

Q3: What challenges does Eli face in the storyline?

A: Eli grapples with a tumultuous family life, including his stepfather’s involvement in drug dealing, his mother’s addiction, and his own exploration of the town’s criminal underbelly.

Q4: Who directed “Boy Swallows Universe”?

A: The series is directed by Bharat Nalluri, Jocelyn Moorhouse, and Kim Mordaunt.

Q5: What inspired the tone of the series?

A: The tone of the series is inspired by the bestselling novel’s unique atmosphere and is described as a joyful expression of dark times, reflecting the spirit and positivity of the author, Trent Dalton.

Q6: Is “Boy Swallows Universe” based on a true story?

A: The series is adapted from Trent Dalton’s semi-autobiographical novel, drawing inspiration from his life experiences.

Q7: Who are the executive producers of the series?

A: Andrew Mason and Troy Lum serve as the executive producers of “Boy Swallows Universe.”

Q8: When is the series set and where does it take place?

A: The series is set in 1985 in a dusty suburb in Brisbane, providing a backdrop to Eli Bell’s teenage years.

Q9: How does the production team maintain the unique tone of the novel in the series?

A: According to producer Troy Lum, they stay true to the novel’s tone by constantly keeping Trent Dalton’s spirit, positivity, and love of life in mind during the adaptation process.

Q10: What role does the novel’s author, Trent Dalton, play in the adaptation?

A: While not explicitly mentioned, the FAQs suggest that Trent Dalton’s unique perspective and personal qualities serve as a guiding influence during the adaptation, ensuring the series captures the essence of the novel.

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