Underbelly: Vanishing Act

Doesn’t make sense to be releasing this now, to be honest. Basically, all it does is talk about everything that we already know and who knows maybe there is some other stuff in there that will come out. But seriously Why they didn’t just wait until they actually find the body or get more information from the husband is beyond me.

1 Like

They would be releasing this now while the story is still fresh in everyone’s mind for maximum viewership.

From what I saw in the trailer I think they will go with multiple possible endings to what happened to Melissa Caddick.


Date revealed

1 Like

Trying to maximise its audience on the back of final week of Married at First Sight.

I still can’t understand how there could be a series where there hasn’t been a court case nor found her or a body.

Let’s hope if there is ever a court case, the jurors didn’t watch the series.


Underbelly: Vanishing Act premieres over two massive nights

In a blockbuster, two-night television event, Australia’s greatest drama franchise returns when Underbelly: Vanishing Act premieres Sunday, April 3, and Monday, April 4, on Channel 9 and 9Now after Married at First Sight.

Based on the real-life mystery that captivated the nation, Underbelly: Vanishing Act delves into the bizarre disappearance of Melissa Caddick, played by Wentworth’s Kate Atkinson. The designer-brand wearing high-roller from Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs disappeared seemingly into thin air after embezzling over $40 million from her family, friends and clients.

Leaving a trail of lies and deception in her wake, the police and her victims are left to piece together the mystery of who Melissa Caddick really was. To those closest to her, she was a daughter, wife, mother, and loyal friend. But as the pieces of the puzzle begin to crystallise and the police close in, a decomposing foot with an Asics running shoe still attached washes up on a sandy beach and turns everything about her disappearance on its head.

Underbelly: Vanishing Act features an outstanding Australian ensemble cast, including Colin Friels (Water Rats, BlackJack, Mystery Road), Jerome Velinsky (Doctor Doctor, Love Child, Method) Tai Hara (Madam Secretary, Home and Away, Hyde & Seek), Maya Stange (Love Child, A Place to Call Home, Wolf Creek), Dylan Hare (Home and Away, Mr In between, Black Comedy), Ursula Mills (Out of the Blue), Frankie J Holden (A Place to Call Home, Underbelly), Anne Tenney (The Castle, A Country Practice, Always Greener) and Sophie Bloom (Love Child, Amazing Grace, Reef Break).

In true Underbelly style, Vanishing Act will grip audiences from start to finish, with a compelling story, gritty characters, and enough greed and betrayal to leave viewers on the edge of their seats.

Produced by Kerrie Mainwaring and Matt Ford, written by Matt Ford and Michael Miller and directed by Geoff Bennett , Underbelly: Vanishing Act is produced by Screentime (a Banijay Group company) with assistance from Screen NSW.

Kate Atkinson is on the front cover of Sunday Life magazine inside Sunday Age and The Sun-Herald today.

In TV Week, they say that “Vanishing Act, blends fact and fiction, to come up with an answer”. Kate Atkinson says “I don’t think the script is in any way pretending to be a documentary or tell-all.” Half the characters in it are fictional.

Tell that to Nine and their promo department. It’s very suss when they use dramatic licence like this with real life people, especially with legal action still pending.


Anyone else finding this really naff? I was expecting so much more. I can’t put my finger on what is off. Although the actress playing MC is really off putting.

I found the first 15 minutes disturbingly gratuitous and had to turn it off. I’m aware of the story and knew suicide would be part of the storyline, but the way it was dealt with in those opening scenes was beyond the pale. There really should’ve been a strong viewer advisory at the start. I have no doubt some of what was depicted would be triggering for people with mental health issues.

Interestingly all comments are turned off on the social posts about the show too… obviously to protect from any legal issues on community comments.

Not that it excuses that but it is Underbelly after all… I don’t imagine people would expect it to be a light story tuning in.
But I do agree there should have been an advisory at the start.

1 Like

The first Underbelly series was prevented from being aired in Victoria and on Imparja by injunction due to relevant trials that were still active at the time Underbelly was due to air. So this is nothing new.

But yes, taking dramatic licence and presenting it as though it was a factual story is misleading.

They could’ve always made the same drama with fictional characters based off a similar premise to the Melissa Caddick story. That way there wouldn’t be as much problems with the legalities of it.

I think it’s time Underbelly started moving away from dramas based off real underworld crime figures and be a limited series fictional crime drama with a different focus every year (one year could be on gangsters, next year could be on corrupt police, then afterwards billionaire fraudsters running casinos etc).

1 Like

I do agree. I think it is time to rejig the premise of Underbelly. I wouldn’t mind it they evolve into an anthology series. So maybe 2-3 stand alone telemovies a year and move away from the biopic / real crime focus.

The ratings over night show it can still pull an audience even if off the back of MAFS.


I’d prefer a limited episode series based on a different theme each year but I like your ideas. There’s so much potential with the Underbelly brand, similar to the Law and Order franchise in America.

1 Like

The problem with the limited series is if they don’t fire then it’s a bigger investment lost.
If it’s a telemovie it would narrow down what kind of stories that the audience wants.

They did do a season of Underbelly telemovies and it didnt really fire up.

1 Like

They were based on previous real life events. I say they they do anthology and do fictional stories this time round.

Footage from Nine News and Today made an appearance on the show tonight. George Gardner from the News appeared, and Karl Stefanovic’s voice was heard - mentioning “Melissa’s disappearance”