David de Lautour has had acting success in both NZ and the United States. He debuted with small roles in Xena: Warrior Princess before moving on to kidult shows Being Eve and The Amazing Extraordinary Friends. Now based in LA, de Lautour has been seen in a number of big US dramas such as NCIS and Once Upon a Time, plus sitcom What I Like about You. He has gone on to star in Outrageous Fortune prequel Westside, as family patriarch Ted West.
In this ScreenTalk, de Lautour talks about:
- Being sacrificed on an altar for Xena: Warrior Princess
- Feeling excited about getting a role on the kidult sitcom Being Eve
- Initially feeling unsure if Power Rangers was right for him
- Getting comfortable making mistakes on the set of Legend of the Seeker
- Being a cog in the well-oiled machine that is US drama series NCIS
- The thrill of wearing an All Black jersey playing Stephen Donald in The Kick
- Embracing nerves on set and how they help with performance
- Loving the incredible vibe on the set of Westside
- Initially auditioning for another role, but getting the job of playing Ted West
- The challenge of making the role his own when it is so identified with Frank Whitten
- The reason he loves playing the character
- Acting alongside Outrageous Fortune veteran Antonia Prebble
- Living and working in Los Angeles
This video was first uploaded on 26 May 2015, and is available on YouTube to embed and via this Creative Commons licence.
Producer and director Colin McRae has a television career spanning 40 years. In that time he has worked in news and current affairs for both TVNZ and TV3, and was the private channel’s Head of Sport to boot. His ground-breaking historical series The New Zealand Wars won Best Documentary Series at the 2006 Qantas Media Awards. In recent years, McRae has produced Native Affairs and Anzac Day coverage for Māori Television.
In this ScreenTalk, McRae talks about:
- The challenges of producing regional news show Top Half
- Trying to get legendary music reporter Dylan Taite to focus on Hamilton stories for the show
- How field directing on magazine show That’s Fairly Interesting was a breath of fresh air
- Producing Sunday night current affairs show Frontline
- Feeling sadness when researching a documentary on Cave Creek
- The long and complex process of making acclaimed historical series The New Zealand Wars
- Bringing pathos and drama to documentary series Legends of the All Blacks
- Feeding his documentary experience into Māori Television’s Anzac Day coverage
- How his career has evolved over the years
This video was first uploaded on 18 May 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via this Creative Commons licence.
Des Monaghan has made an enormous contribution to the television industry as a TV producer and network executive in both New Zealand and Australia. Starting as a trainee producer with the NZBC, Monaghan produced a range of pioneering current affairs shows such as Town and Around, Gallery and Compass. In more recent years, Monaghan set up Australasian production company Screentime, whose slate includes popular shows Popstars, Underbelly, Police Ten 7 and Beyond the Darklands.
In this ScreenTalk interview, Monaghan talks about:
- Working with a blind cameraman and deaf sound recordist in his early TV days
- Having almost no content to broadcast when he began producing Town and Around
- Playing an awful lot of pool with Brian Edwards, while producing Compass
- Failing to realise the power he had on current affairs show Gallery
- How the show famously helped to settle the Post Office strike
- The laziness of the print media in New Zealand in the 1970s
- Being kept waiting by David Frost while making Frost Over New Zealand
- How legendary fighter pilot Sir Keith Park created a poignant moment on the show
- Raising the ire of rugby league fans after taking over sports coverage on TV
- New Zealand needing true public service television
- Being grateful for the varied opportunities his career has offered
This video was first uploaded on the 4th of May 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Programmer John McCready has had a significant impact on the television industry in New Zealand. After extended time in music and radio he joined TVNZ in 1989 as Manager of Presentation and Promotion, just as TV3 came on air. The following year McCready became TVNZ's Director of Programming, and revamped both TV1 and TV2 over a four year period. He headed overseas for a while, before returning to New Zealand as Director of Programming and Marketing for Sky TV. Before retiring in 2007, McCready successfully launched The Living Channel and Food TV on Sky.
In this ScreenTalk, McCready talks about:
- Getting into television by accident
- Taking on fledgling TV3 as Director of Programming for TVNZ, and highlighting the differing branding of TVNZ's channels
- How changing TVNZ into a competitive venture was his biggest challenge
- Overseeing the beginnings of reality TV on New Zealand screens
- Being proud of his part in commissioning Shortland Street, and fighting internal opposition to cover Australian Rugby League
- Having to rethink his mindset when moving to Sky TV
- Why he launched Sky News in New Zealand
- The importance of reality television to the local TV production industry
- Needing public service TV to create good drama shows, and the unfortunate cancellation of the Nothing Trivial series
- What the future of TV is likely to be
- Looking back on a varied and interesting career — and one of his biggest regrets
This video was first uploaded on the 28th of April 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute as part of this Creative Commons licence.
Irene Wood has played Katherine Mansfield, a nymphomaniac pensioner, and a gin-toting grandma to a Go Girl. Her screen career first got busy in the early days of NZ TV, as an actor, TV presenter, and musical performer. Years later she would snare what is probably her best-known role: as a hard-drinking grandma over five seasons of hit show Go Girls. Wood has also appeared on Shortland Street and in movies Rest for the Wicked and The Shirt.
In this ScreenTalk interview, Wood talks about:
• Her no-nonsense attitude to acting — and the only two rules that matter in the game
• “Prancing around the stage” and singing-off key, in her first performing role
• Busy days of television in the 60s
• The advantages of being forced to perform live
• Wearing Elizabeth McRae’s clothes on Shortland Street
• Playing mother to a “hopeless drug addict son” in dark-edged movie The Shirt
• Her role as Nan McMann, one of a quartet of solo mothers on Go Girls
• Revelling in the chance to make a fool of herself on the show
• Playing a sex-obsessed pensioner alongside Ilona Rodgers, in film Rest for the Wicked
• Why there are less roles in NZ for actors of a certain vintage
• Her thoughts on portrayals of elderly characters on screen
This video was first uploaded on the 20th of April 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
John Milligan is an award-winning producer, director and writer who has worked on a wide range of shows for television. His many series credits include Maggie’s Garden Show, Epitaph, Shipwreck and Mucking In. Milligan was also producer and director of the documentaries Trio at the Top, New Zild and Von Tempsky’s Ghost.
In this ScreenTalk, Milligan talks about:
- Working on live, non-commercial morning show Weekend
- Commanding 14 cameras on his first documentary Monza Monaco Macau Wellington
- Not knowing anything about plants when he began on Maggie’s Garden Show
- Being surprised at how long it took to make Kiwi bach documentary A Summer Place
- Digging into history for his motor racing documentary Trio at the Top
- The challenge of creating battle scenes in the rain for Von Tempsky’s Ghost
- Convincing people Kiwis have an accent when making New Zild
- Thinking there’s too much TV nowadays
This video was first uploaded on the 13th of April 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Chas Toogood is an award-winning documentary producer and director whose work has showcased the strength and determination of the human spirit. He began his career as a news journalist and then moved on to a series of high profile documentaries including the Legends of the All Blacks series, Mark Inglis documentary No Mean Feat, and Sir Peter Blake – The Boy From Bayswater. Toogood has gone on to direct episodes of Wild Coasts with Craig Potton and Coast New Zealand.
In this ScreenTalk, Toogood talks about:
This video was first uploaded on the 7th of April 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Tom Hern is a film producer who began his screen career as a junior reporter on children’s television show What Now?. He went on to star in The Tribe, where he met his future business partner James Napier Robertson. Hern acted in a number of other TV shows such as Shortland Street and Power Rangers, before producing his first feature film I’m Not Harry Jenson. Since then Hern has produced features Everyting We Loved and The Dark Horse.
In this ScreenTalk, Hern talks about:
- How confidence as an 11-year-old got him a job on What Now?
- Meeting his hero Ben Harper on the show
- Failing his first audition to play the villain in kidult hit The Tribe
- How the show led to meeting his long term business partner
- Playing his first adult role on Shortland Street
- The changing nature of his character on the soap
- Being in the ‘deep end’ producing I’m Not Harry Jenson
- Using acting relationships to help cast the film
- How Everything We Loved was the smoothest film he’s worked on
- Working with director Max Currie to set the tone of the film
- The long hard road making feature film The Dark Horse
- Being blessed by a dream cast, from Cliff Curtis to newbie Wayne Hapi
- Feeling privileged to do the work he does
This video was first uploaded on the 31st of March 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Don Reynolds is a sound operator turned film producer who has had a big impact on the New Zealand film industry. He was a sound recorder/mixer on many of our classic films of the 1980s and went on to produce movies such as The Quiet Earth, Sylvia, Mr Wrong, and River Queen. Reynolds was also one of the main forces behind the setting up of long-running TV soap Shortland Street.
In this ScreenTalk, Reynolds talks about:
- Working with overseas actors for the first time on the film Beyond Reasonable Doubt
- investing in hit movie Goodbye Pork Pie
- Having to drive hundreds of miles a day to make the film
- Being proud of his gunshot-filled sound work on the classic Utu
- Being treated as a second-class citizen on Savage Islands
- The pressure of facing a funding deadline on The Quiet Earth
- Delaying the shoot of Illustrious Energy by a year
- Facing huge problems in making the film River Queen
- Being instrumental in getting Shortland Street on air
- How lunch breaks were his biggest contribution to the industry.
This video was first uploaded on the 23rd of March 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Mark Everton started his broadcasting career in radio, before joining the TVNZ newsroom in 1985. After jumping ship to help run Nightline for TV3, he set himself up as an independent producer and director. Everton has been involved with a number of award-winning documentaries including Back from the Dead and Lawson Quins doco The Five of Us. His credits also include the series Epitaph, Captain’s Log, MasterChef New Zealand and Making New Zealand.
In this ScreenTalk, Everton talks about:
- Learning "so much" while working with the late Angela D’Audney and others on Eyewitness News
- Moving to TV3 for the "rock'n'roll" days of late night news programme Nightline
- How the network’s receivership led to better stories
- How a chance conversation about graveyards lead to hit show Epitaph
- Successfully convincing the Lawson Quins to tell their story in The Five of Us
- Finding out too late there were a lot of family home movies
- Working with Johnny Givins and Gresham Bradley on Captain’s Log
- Getting memorable advice about seasickness on one of the journeys
- Obtaining rare footage of a real murder investigation for Operation Bouma
- Asking the tough questions of contestants on MasterChef New Zealand
- How Making New Zealand was much more than just an archive series
This video was first uploaded on the 16th of March 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.