International Film Festival starring Auckland

June 14 2010


Article taken from NZ Herald. Written by Russell Baillie.

"When it opens in Auckland in a month, the 2010 New Zealand International Film Festival will have a decidedly domestic flavour. It's always been global in its reach during its 42 years as the annual highpoint for the city's film buffs. But this year it is also focussed on Auckland like never before. Even the programme, which is launched next week, has its own section titled "Auckland Erupts" dedicated to the five features set in the city having their world premieres at this year's event.

Inevitably, those films involve some familiar faces as well as familiar territory.

Both After The Waterfall and The Hopes and Dreams of Gazza Snell feature Outrageous Fortune stars in leading roles - Antony Starr in the former and Robyn Malcolm in the latter.

Starr plays a park ranger living on the West Coast, whose life is up-ended with the disappearance of his young daughter, while Malcolm is the wife of the titular Gazza (played by Aussie actor William McInnes) whose life in Howick with their two teenage sons Marc and Ed comes under pressure from Dad's efforts to make motorsport heroes out his boys..."

Read the full article here.

Read the full festival line up on Flicks here.



May 06 2010

NZFC press release

The New Zealand Film Commission is pleased to announce and congratulate the twelve film maker teams selected to attend the Escalator Low Budget Feature Film boot camp in June.

Following on from boot camp, in September four of these teams will be offered production finance of up to NZ$250,000 for one of their ideas. Announcing the selection, NZ Film Commission CEO Graeme Mason said “251 applications were received for Escalator. We have received a wealth of strong filmmaking ideas explicitly conceived with low budget production in mind. I am looking forward to seeing how the teams develop their ideas through boot camp, and like everyone else, am excited to see which four films get green lit.” Escalator was launched in February this year. New applications for Escalator will next be sought in March 2011.   Some general observations and thoughts, which may assist film makers with their future submissions, can be viewed on

Juliet Bergh, Jessica Charlton, Philip Thomas
(Existence, Submission, The Trolley Boy)

Jonathan Brough, Karl Zohrab, David Brechin-Smith
(Pornography, Albaniya, Point Of View)

Gary Davies, Mike Hohaia, Rohan Satyanand
(The Void, Drop, Dark Side)

Zoe Hobson, Guy Pigden, Harley Neville
(I Survived A Zombie Holocaust, Wellington City Carbon Police, The Project)

Gerard Johnstone, Luke Sharpe
(House Bound, Swift Hands Bukachan, Home Surveilance)

Carthew Neal, Max Currie
(Actress Wanted, Ctrl Alt Delete, Family of Men)

Tom Reilly, Wayne Gordon
(Downgrading, UnDead End, Suspended Animations)

Tui Ruwhiu, Bradford Haami, Regan Hall
(Bloodlines, Kiri-Haehae: Skin Deep, Wero: Ultimate Challenge)

Bonnie Slater, David Coyle, Paul Wedel
(Mistletoe, Stand Up, Party Film)

Ant Timpson, Victor Rodger, Leanne Saunders
(Night Of The Living Palagis, Lift It Up, Swimming With Dolphins)

Sally Tran, Omar Crawford
(Vending Machine, Cache to Tape, Cure My Imagination)

Steve Whelan-Turnbull, Steve Tamarapa, Jamie Selkirk
(Dan, The Teddies, Wasted)

Love Birds

April 22 2010

Love Birdsa feature film written by Nick Ward
in cinemas 24 February 2010

New Zealand romantic comedy, from the director of Second Hand Wedding, that tells the story of a regular bloke on a quest to find true love – all with the help of a native New Zealand shelduck. Stars Rhys Darby (Flight of the Conchords) and Sally Hawkins (Made in Dagenham).

The happy and predictable life of Doug (Darby) - a road working 'every-man' and massive fan of the legendary band Queen - falls to pieces when his long-term girlfriend suddenly dumps him. He's gutted. But when an injured Paradise Shelduck (Pierre) crash-lands on his roof, Doug is compelled to nurse the duck back to health. He meets Holly (Hawkins) - a sassy animal specialist - and so begins his journey on the rocky road to love...

starring Rhys Darby, Sally Hawkins, Byran Brown, Craig Hall, Faye Smythe, Wesley Dowdell, Mia Pistorius, Emily Barclay, Dave Fane and twenty seven trained ducks...

Watch the trailer here.



March 05 2010

Leighton Cardnoa feature film by Doug Dillaman

JAKE is an independent feature film shot in Auckland late 2009, now being submitted for festival consideration world wide. JAKE is the first feature film in New Zealand to be shot entirely on the RED camera.

The story of Jacob, a man whose life is stolen when he is inexplicably recast by a shadowy agency. When the actor who takes his place rekindles a long lost love, Jacob will do whatever it takes to fight for the role of his life.

starring Auckland Actors Leighton Cardno alongside Sam Berkley, Julie Collis, Jonathan Hodge and Martyn Wood.
directed by Doug Dillaman

for futther information visit the official website here


Yogi Bear

February 13 2010

in theatres nationwide from 13 January 2010

Yogi Bear, from the Hanna-Barbera cartoon which dates back to 1958, makes the leap to the big screen. A live action film featuring computer-animated wildlife, Yogi is voiced by life-long fan Dan Ackroyd, his sidekick Boo Boo is Justin Timberlake.

When a corrupt mayor announces he'll turn failing Jellystone Park into a logging facility, Yogi and Boo Boo team with Ranger Smith (Tom Cavanagh, TV's Scrubs) and a wildlife documentarian (Anna Faris, The House Bunny) to save their home.

Yogi Bear was shot in New Zealand - Woodhill Forest in Auckland and the Aratiatia rapids in Taupo standing in for Jellystone.

Dan Akroyd voices a CGI Yogi, and Justin Timberlake his side-kick Boo Boo. Local actors have picked up minor roles alongside this international cast, including Richard Edge, Maisy McLeod, Joyce Irving, and Michael Saccente.

The Six Dollar Fifty Man

January 18 2010

The Six Dollar Fifty Man

a short film by Louis Sutherland and Mark Albiston
in competition worldwide


The Six Dollar Fifty Man won the Coopers Award for Best Film at Flickerfest 2010, beating competitors from around the world to take the $5000 prize – and eligibility for Oscar consideration in 2011. Written and directed by Mark Albiston and Auckland Actor Louis Sutherland and produced by Wendy Cuthbert, the film is set in 1970s New Zealand and follows Andy, a gutsy 8 year-old boy who is forced to break out of his make-believe superhero world to deal with playground bullies. The film was previously awarded the Short Film Special Distinction after playing in Competition at the Festival De Cannes in 2009.


The Six Dollar Fifty Man has won the top prize- the Jury Prize in International Short Filmmaking- at the 26th Sundance Film Festival in Utah. This award further qualifies The Six Dollar Fifty Man for consideration for an Academy® Award nomination. The Sundance Film Festival is held in and around Park City in Utah each January. This year the festival's short film program comprised 70 short films from U.S. and international filmmakers selected from a record 6,092 submissions.


Taken from SDGNZ newsletter.

"The Six Dollar Fifty Man directed by SDGNZ members Louis Sutherland and Mark Albiston has won Best Drama at Aspen Shortfest, USA.

The win marks the short film's fourth Oscar® qualifying film festival award to date - further qualifying it for consideration for the Academy® Award nomination in 2011. It's gone from strength after having its world premier and gaining Special Distinction at Cannes last year. This year it has already won the Jury Prize in International Short Film making at Sundance, Best Narrative Short at Cinequest Film Festival, USA and also the Cooper Award for Best Short Film at Australasia's only Academy qualifying film festival, Flickerfest.

The short also won the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), Los Angeles Prize for Excellence, as part of its selection at Aspen Shortsfest.

Written and directed by Wellingtonians Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland and produced by Wendy Cuthbert, The Six Dollar Fifty Man tells the story of a gutsy 8 year old boy who retreats into a make believe world to deal with playground bullying.

In announcing the winners, the judges, including actor Meg Ryan, said The Six Dollar Fifty Man was "funny, fresh, fully realised all cinematic elements from music to camera angles and superb cast including the mind boggling, awesome performance of the very young lead (Oscar Vandy-Connor)."

Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland are currently attending Aspen Shortfest with support from 42BELOW, so were able to accept the award in person. They both said Aspen is one of the best festivals they've attended, "The standard of the 100 short films here is amazing, we're very lucky to have won. It was great to travel to Aspen and we couldn't have done it without 42BELOW who paid for our trip and also Telecom, who helped us keep in touch with our families."

The Six Dollar Fifty Man was made with finance from the Short Film Fund of the NZ Film Commission. International sales are handled by NZ Film, which is the sales arm of NZFC.

Aspen Shortfest runs from April 6 - 11 and is considered one of the world's premier international short film and video showcases for the trend-setting art form: the short. Aspen Shortfest's centerpiece, the six day Oscar® qualifying International Competition, offers a lively, thought provoking and humorous selection of drama, comedy, animation and documentary: Aspen Film."



December 12 2009

a feature film, now in cinemas

1903. A guerilla fighter from the South African Boer war called Arjan (Winstone) takes on a manhunt for Maori seaman Kereama (Morrison), who is accused of murdering a British soldier. What follows is a cat and mouse pursuit through with both hunter and huntee testing their bushcraft and wits against that of the other.

featuring Mick Rose and Stephen Papps alongside Ray Winstone and Temuera Morrison
directed by Ian Sharp



December 12 2009


a feature film

ICE sees the destructive effects of climate change cause unimaginable devastation and panic worldwide as the human race finds itself contemplating the dawn of a new ice age.

It is 2020. Findings by environmental scientist Professor Thom Archer suggest that Halo, the corporate energy company drilling on the Greenland Glacier are causing it to melt.

Archer's warnings are ignored, so he heads to the Arctic to find indisputable evidence. Upon arrival, he realises humankind is under immediate threat, and races home to save hisfamily.

The glacier collapses, with devastating consequences. Astonishing weather patterns emerge and plunge the world's temperatures into steep decline.

ICE confronts a wholly terrifying and plausible natural disaster of epic proportions. This uncompromising production sees a planet on the brink of annihilation, unleashing an apocalypse with an intensity and magnitude audiences will never forget.

featuring Brooke Williams alongside an international all star cast including Richard Roxburgh, Stephen Moyer, Frances Connor and Sam Neill

directed by Nick Copus
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