Julia Parnell runs Notable Pictures, and is the award-winning producer behind the offbeat Wayne Anderson: Singer of Songs; diversity series Both Worlds and Arranged; and music docos The Exponents and The Dragon Story. Parnell is also one of the driving forces behind successful online mini-documentary initiative Loading Docs.
In this ScreenTalk, Parnell talks about:
- Working with one of a kind singer Wayne Anderson
- Celebrating ethnic diversity with series Both Worlds
- Redemption and change being at the heart of her documentary Drug Court
- Proving to the NZ Film Commission that she could handle the visual effects on short film Dive
- Her luck at being able to produce music documentaries about legendary bands The Exponents and Dragon
- Exploring a range of marriages for TV series Arranged
- The contribution Loading Docs is making to the screen industry
This video was first uploaded on 21 July 2015, and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via this Creative Commons licence.
Hugh Macdonald’s long filmmaking career encompasses historical epics, Oscar-nominated shorts, and lots of time on the road. Macdonald is probably best-known for three-screen spectacular This is New Zealand, which got crowds queueing at World Expo in Japan, before playing for months back home. A two-decade long stint at the National Film Unit also saw him directing two episodes of historical epic The Governor, and producing the first of many animated shorts.
In this ScreenTalk interview, Macdonald talks about:
- Early career advice to try advertising, before he joined Government filmmakers the National Film Unit at age 18
- Noticing some tears from the audience when short film This is New Zealand got its first screenings at the NFU
- The film's enormous success in Japan, and back in New Zealand
- The joys of getting out on the road to make travel films
- The “unique experience” of directing historical TV epic The Governor
- Memorable all nighters planning the series, alongside workaholic producer/director Tony Isaac
- Late night script contributions from an Avalon floor, by Keith Aberdein
- How the spirit of the NFU changed after the departure of longtime manager Geoffrey Scott
- Producing animated films for Bob Stenhouse
- Oscar nominations for Stenhouse's The Frog, the Dog and the Devil, alongside Pixar's John Lasseter
- Witnessing the last days of the Denniston railway incline, while making films After Ninety Years and On Denniston
- His new film about writer and naturalist Sheila Natusch
This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via this Creative Commons licence.
Mark McNeill runs production company Razor Films, and has worked often with popular TV psychologist Nigel Latta. McNeill has a background as a freelance documentary maker, with credits including Back from the Dead – The Saga of the Rose Noelle, My Father’s War in Italy, and series Epitaph. He also worked on early reality show Kiwi Flatmates.com. McNeill and Latta's collaborations include the Politically Incorrect series of shows and The Hard Stuff with Nigel Latta.
In this ScreenTalk, McNeill talks about:
- Having complete control on his episode of ground-breaking series First Hand
- Regular interruptions by gunfire while filming Mogadishu Madness
- Interviewing survivor John Glennie for documentary Back from the Dead - The Saga of the Rose Noelle
- Finding great stories for TV series Epitaph
- Mad times making "insanely successful" early reality show Kiwi Flatmates.com
- Working with the "fantastic" Nigel Latta on the hit Politically Incorrect shows
- His new project following 1037 people’s lives in The Science of Us
- Basing his career on making shows he really wants to make
This video was first uploaded on 15 June 2015 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute as part of 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.
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.
Philly de Lacey is the Managing Director of production company Screentime NZ. Screentime has produced a number of crime documentaries and dramas, and De Lacey has been involved with many of them as Executive Producer. Her credits include documentary series Police Ten 7, Water Patrol and Marae DIY; and the dramas Bloodlines, Siege, Safe House and Underbelly: Land of the Long Green Cloud. Currently De Lacey has two telemovies in post-production: How to Murder Your Wife, and Venus and Mars.
In this ScreenTalk, de Lacey talks about:
- Wanting to demystify the police in Police Ten 7
- Having to carefully edit the programme to protect the vulnerable
- The joy of making ‘feel good’ show Marae DIY
- Making sure victims of crime were okay with being part of Beyond the Darklands
- Dealing carefully with legal issues with Underbelly: Land of the Long Green Cloud
- Being emotionally affected when filming Siege
- Justifying the decision to make How to Murder Your Wife a black comedy
This video was first uploaded on September 1 2014. This video is not part of the Creative Commons licence.
Robert Boyd-Bell has made a huge contribution to the development of TV news reporting in New Zealand. He began his career as a reporter with the fledgling NZBC News service in the mid 1960s, and later headed the northern newsroom of TV One in the 1970s. Boyd-Bell has also worked as a documentary producer, and was instrumental in setting up educational television services eTV and The Knowledge Breakfast. He is a keen advocate for public service broadcasting.
In this ScreenTalk, Boyd-Bell talks about:
- Why the NZBC had to set up its own news service
- The slow journey international news took to get on air, in the days before a national network
- Bringing changes to the newsroom
- The infamous Tonight interview with Sir Robert Muldoon
- Establishing educational television service eTV
- How The Knowledge Breakfast became the first online TV show in New Zealand
- How family dynamics proved a challenge making Billy T: Te Movie
- How his fascination with Kiri Te Kanawa led to the doco My Breathing is Singing
- Why New Zealand needs a non-commercial TV service
This video was first uploaded on July 28 2014 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Veteran producer John Keir has had a long career producing both documentaries and films. He has collaborated on several film projects with director Grant Lahood, including Lemming Aid and Chicken. Keir has also produced large live TV events such as the Sir Edmund Hillary special On Top of the World and Anzac Day coverage for Maori Television.
In this ScreenTalk, Keir talks about:
- Telling the quirky story of temperance in the documentary Fight the Good Fight
- Battling lawyers in order to film in court for Flight 901: The Erebus Disaster
- How live coverage of the Sir Edmund Hillary special On Top of the World nearly came a cropper
- Why the weather created havoc during the filming of Grant Lahood short Lemming Aid
- Disappointment over poor box office for the feature film Chicken
- Being fascinated by the idea behind Treaty of Waitangi series Lost in Translation
- Finding Mani’s Story the most incredible documentary he’s worked on
- Making actor Mark Mitchinson shave his eyebrows for the tele-feature Bloodlines
This video was first uploaded on 7 April 2014 and is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.
Producer Rhonda Kite, who runs Kiwa Media Group, has worked on television, film, and interactive book projects. Her first production was award-winning 1998 documentary Otara: Defying the Odds. She also produced the controversial Chinks, Coconuts and Curry Munchers and, on the big screen, Squeegee Bandit. Kite produced anthology series Mataku and long-running arts show Kete Aronui. Kiwa Media Group has also pioneered a process of dubbing films into other languages.
In this ScreenTalk, Kite talks about:
- Learning how to produce on her first documentary Otara: Defying the Odds
- Wanting to tell her own 'truth' in the documentary
- The trials and triumphs of a Māori woman in business in Hell for Leather
- Pushing the boundaries in Chinks, Coconuts and Curry-Munchers
- Telling real yet spooky stories in series Mataku
- Discovering the power of drama from other cultures
- The absolute joy of making arts series Kete Aronui
- Being inspired and saddened by the story behind Squeegee Bandit
- An emotional moment for Sandor Lau, the director of the documentary
This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.