Watch: Stray Q&A with Director Dustin Feneley

, ,
Stray key still

Writer/director Dustin Feneley answers questions about his debut feature film Stray (2018). Dustin talks about not compromising his cinematic, arthouse vision, despite modest means while making the film.

 

“We wanted a very formalised, considered cinematography in kind of like master shots and I want things to play out longer. But the implication production-wise was that we could milk all of that one hour set aside for that scene … It meant that art department, lighting, camera, everyone had so much time relatively speaking to nail that one shot.”

 

This event was part of the Film Talk Series, presented by DEGNZ and Rialto Cinemas in Auckland.

 

Call for Applications: Directing Actors Workshop with Ian Hughes

,
Directing Actors workshop

DEGNZ is now accepting applications for a one-day Directing Actors Workshop in Wellington with highly experienced actor and director Ian Hughes.

Ian HughesIan Hughes’ breakthrough role was in acclaimed TV series and movie Topless Women Talk About Their Lives. Topless was followed by multiple TV guest parts (Xena, Bliss, The Brokenwood Mysteries, Go Girls) and film roles (He Died with a Felafel in His Hand, Memory and Desire). He wrote, starred and directed in his own Kafkaesque short, The Waiting Room, and toured his acclaimed one-man play Ship Songs.

Ian has worked with many of New Zealand’s top directors including Niki Caro, Peter Jackson and Michael Hurst, and is now primarily a TV and commercials director himself, with work on Step Dave and nearly 300 episodes of Shortland Street.

The class shall explore a range of principles, tools and techniques that address issues that arise in casting, rehearsal and shooting. Ian will help directors increase their confidence and creativity when working with actors.

The workshop has ten places and is aimed at emerging directors with some directing experience. Prospective participants may be developing projects for Fresh Shorts, Premiere Pathways, or with features in funded development.

Selected participants will be required to do a bit of prep before the workshop.

When: Saturday 1 December, 9.30am – 5.30pm
Where: The New Zealand Film and Television School, 86 Vivian St, Wellington

A travel allowance may be available to some DEGNZ members travelling from outside of the Wellington Region.

Cost: DEGNZ members – Free, Non-members – $100. Lunch provided.

To Apply

Application Deadline: 3PM, Thursday 22 November 2018

STEP 1: Submit the form below.

STEP 2: You will be redirected to the File Upload page, which can also be found here. Upload your application file(s) in PDF or Word Document. Submit before the deadline:

  • your CV/filmography with links to examples of your work
  • a brief, maximum one-page letter on why you would like to attend and what you hope to gain from the workshop

Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

 

Loading…

This workshop is brought to you with the generous support of the New Zealand Film Commission.

NZFC

2018 Screen Guilds Christmas Parties

,

Come have a drink with us to celebrate 2018 at the Screen Guilds Christmas Parties in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch!

Cash Bar
Nibbles provided

You must RSVP on Eventbrite in advance. Only financial members (+1 partner) of the participating New Zealand guilds and associations will be eligible to attend. Proof of membership required.

Auckland – Wednesday 28 November – RSVP here

Christchurch – Monday 10 December – RSVP here

Wellington – Wednesday 12 December – RSVP here

 

Christchurch invite

Brand New Zealand in Film

,
View from the Top banner

NB: Anna Serner quotes extracted from a Nordisk Film & TV Fund article

 

Anna Serner, the CEO of the Swedish Film Institute, spoke at the Big Screen Symposium a couple of weeks ago on gender equity.

In the short time she has been at the Swedish Institute, she has essentially delivered gender parity in funding for feature film. By parity, that means that 50 per cent of films are written, directed and or produced by women. As in New Zealand now, it was the number of women directing films in Sweden where the numbers were poorest.

At the same time Serner strove for gender parity, she also strove for higher quality.

“Our strategy is basically to have high demands, and clear goals. We look for films that either can reach a high national audience or will go to international festivals. Ideally, we’d love to have both!”

This demand for quality saw an increase in rejections for funding applications from both men and women, rising from 80% ‘no’ to 90% ‘no’.

Serner’s approach upset men and women. The men because they felt it was harder to get funding. The women because they wanted to be considered “directors” rather than “women directors” and because their funding applications were still being rejected.

The quality focus is a very interesting aspect of the changes Serner has brought about. It is linked into a desire to project ‘Brand Sweden’ through film, which ties into the Swedish Government’s policy to project ‘Brand Sweden’ through four key profile areas: Society, Innovation, Creativity, Sustainability.

This from the Brand Sweden strategy document:

Countries are dependent on the esteem and confidence of the rest of the world in their competition for tourists, investors, talent and the attention of others. Sweden is a country with a good reputation, but the world is changing rapidly and competition for attention is growing. A strong image of Sweden abroad is important for achieving political objectives, promoting trade, attracting investment, tourists and talent, and encouraging cultural and scientific exchange.

The Swedish Film Institute has a very interesting matrix for deciding whether or not to fund film and help project Brand Sweden. It takes a four quadrant approach.

– Courtesy Anna Serner, Swedish Film Institute

 

Quadrants A, B and D are the successful quadrants. C is for the duds.

For New Zealand, the number of Admissions would halve as we are essentially 50% the size of Sweden. And if we looked at NZ films, in A you would have films with niche audiences with high critical acclaim, such as the recent Inland Road and Stray. Sitting at the upper end of both axis in B would be Hunt for the Wilderpeople. Let’s not talk about C. And in D you would probably find the latest Pork Pie.

Swedish independent filmmakers target A and B and with considerable success. They had three films in Cannes this year (we haven’t had one since Christine Jeff’s Rain, 17 years ago). The breakout hit The Square is a definite B, as would be another great Swedish film Force Majure, both by director Ruben Östlund.

For Anna Serner, the Swedish brand is equally important domestically as internationally.

“The Swedish brand is very highly regarded internationally but not enough at home. So we have to fight harder to get the films to reach the audience, by branding Swedish films better and having a greater diversity of voices.”

Brand New Zealand is definitely talked about in Business and in some aspects of Arts and Culture, the Venice Biennale being one example. But it’s not integrated into a cohesive strategy. And it’s not consciously focused on in our film output. It’s high time this was done.

Tui Ruwhiu
Executive Director

 

NZ Cinema: Q&A Screening of Vermilion

,

Vermilion posterNew Zealand film Vermilion opens in cinemas on November 8, the feature film debut from writer/director Dorthe Scheffmann. The film is edited by DEGNZ member Peter Roberts.

Scheffmann and star Jennifer Ward-Lealand will attend a Q&A screening on Friday 9 November. Come join the filmmakers and DEGNZ for this Film Talk at Rialto Cinemas.

Vermilion tells the story of a group of women – mothers, daughters, friends and neighbours. Darcy (Ward-Lealand), a composer, sees colours when she plays musical notes. When she notices her usually subtle colours changing- she realises a profound change is upon her. Over a summer month, Darcy creates a time of music and reflection that help her make a final choice.

Watch the trailer