'directors' Posts

Rob Sarkies: Three movies and two little boys

Posted on 18 September 2012

Rob Sarkies' first three movies have all begun in southern climes, then headed in unexpected directions. Scarfies celebrates Dunedin student life, before morphing into a twisted examination of morality under fire. Out of the Blue celebrates community and the ordinary person, while recreating the 1990 killings at Aramoana. New feature Two Little Boys is a black comedy featuring Flight of the Conchords star Bret McKenzie and Australian comedian Hamish Blake. In this ScreenTalk interview, Sarkies talks about:

  • How he enjoys making films which mix different flavours, genres and ideas
  • How Two Little Boys mixes elements of comedy, relationship drama and shock horror
  • How the film's lovable but heinous characters offer a chance to explore relationships - especially relationships in decay
  • Signing up Flight of the Conchords star Bret McKenzie
  • Writing scripts with his multi-talented brother Duncan Sarkies
  • Being aware of the stakes when he made his first feature Scarfies
  • Using marketing to overcome the Kiwi cultural cringe
  • Creating a perception that Out of the Blue was made with heart and artistry, so people could feel comfortable about being involved

This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.



interview, directors, marketing, directing, out of the blue, robert sarkies, bret mckenzie, duncan sarkies, two little boys, scarfies, aramoana, cultural cringe, friendship, interviews

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Jason Stutter - the Comedy of Murder

Posted on 7 September 2010

Jason Stutter - director of Ronald Hugh Morrieson adaptation Predicament - has a talent for going for the jugular, yet doing it in style. In Stutter’s movies, the camera plunges headfirst into haunted hospitals, dodgy smalltown dealings, and fight scenes with Pacific Island Ninjas whose parents were unexpectedly half-gobbled by fish. In this ScreenTalk interview, Stutter talks about

  • why he makes films
  • his many projects featuring Flight of the Conchords’ Jemaine Clement
  • falling in love with the dialogue in Ronald Hugh Morrieson’s novel Predicament
  • the lessons that can be learnt from Morrieson’s career
  • the bravery of comedians, and why he loves giving them acting roles in his movies
  • the genesis of Tongan Ninja, Stutter’s no-budget, three years in the making feature debut
  • the unusual way haunted hospital tale Diagnosis:Death was funded
  • the importance of staying loyal to the original text

This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.



comedy, funding, directors, directing, comedians, business, raybon kan, ronald hugh morrieson, heath franklin, interviews

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Martin Henderson - Home from Hollywood

Posted on 27 April 2010

Although New Zealand actor Martin Henderson made his screen debut more than two decades ago, new film Home by Christmas marks his first movie shot on Kiwi soil. Directed by Gaylene Preston and based on the wartime experiences of her parents, Home by Christmas sees Henderson playing a young soldier who leaves his wife behind to serve overseas. After making his screen debut in 1988 on Margaret Mahy TV series Strangers, Henderson spent three years on Shortland Street playing Stuart Nielsen, then moved on to Australia and later the United States. Since then he has acted everywhere from India to Sweden, and in everything from horror (The Ring) to musicals (Bride and Prejudice) to TV’s House MD. His work as Cate Blanchett’s disabled brother in drama Little Fish saw him nominated for an Australian Film Institute supporting actor award. Variety magazine called his performance “a revelation”. In this ScreenTalk interview, Henderson talks about:

  • playing Gaylene Preston’s father in Home by Christmas
  • how Preston kept him on his toes
  • his lucky break into acting, aged 13, with the TV series Strangers
  • how three years on Shortland Street was both good and bad for his acting
  • working in the United States, and the success of the remake of The Ring
  • donning leathers for motorcycle movie Torque
  • the spirit of collaboration on Australian movie Little Fish
This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.



television, hollywood, Interviews, actors, directors, soap operas, box office, auditions, marketing, collaboration, improvisation, scriptwriting, shortland street

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