TASMANIANS hope a new Australian horror film about cannibals will attract more tourists and movie makers to the Apple Isle.
The film, Dying Breed, portrays a remote Tasmanian community as flesh-eating savages.
But Tasmania Tourism Council chief executive Daniel Hanna said the movie, mostly filmed near the Pieman River, western Tasmania, should help lift the state's profile.
"Any film that shows some of the key parts .. like the rugged wilderness, is going to be a good thing and will hopefully spark some interest," Mr Hanna said today.
"Obviously as long as visitors don't expect there really to be cannibals in Tasmania."
Starring Leigh Whannell and Nathan Phillips, the film, to be released on November 6, is about four people searching for the Tasmanian Tiger when they happen on a cannibal tribe descended from escaped convict Alexander `the Pieman' Pearce.
Pearce was a real life convict who escaped a brutal penal colony in the 1830s and survived by eating other people.
West Coast Mayor Darryl Gerrity said the story's background was real and locals were happy to promote the area.
"Cannibalism did happen here, you can't ignore history although it's a bastardisation of that story," Mr Gerrity said.
Mr Gerrity joked that locals should have been used as the actors.
"Most of us would have fitted the bill admirably and true to life.
"Because we're all descendants of the Pieman."
Mr Gerrity said the area had "lots of stories here that would make good movies".
Director and writer Jody Dwyer said filming the movie, which had a $3m budget, was difficult as a lot of equipment had to be shipped to Tasmania.
Some scenes were also shot in Victoria's Dandenong Ranges.
Dwyer said the Tasmanian wilderness and isolation played the role of a character in the film, he said.
"I would have loved to have shot the whole thing in Tasmania, but I'm afraid Tasmania don't really have any back-ups in terms of film industry," Dwyer said.
Dwyer said he wanted to make a movie that would appeal to people worldwide and was commercially viable.
He believed other horror films such as Saw and Wolf Creek were changing the way Australian films were viewed internationally.
"There is a move to be more commercially aware by a new wave of filmmakers that is actually getting tired with the cliches of drug ridden suburbia or flat red heat haze outback movies, we've seen a lot of them," Dwyer said.
"You are going to still make those the Rowan Woods films, – the Little Fish films because they're beautiful films but they won't do well internationally they will be respected but not do well economically.
"A lot of films are being funded that nobody wants to see and it's a shame because people want to support the industry but if something doesn't excite me I won't spend my 15 bucks."
Dying Breed opens on November 6.