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Zoom's Gallery Views of DEGNZ's workshops

As life accelerates back to speed, for some, lockdown may seem like a distant memory. What happened in the DEGNZ calendar during April and May, you ask?

Lockdown turned out to be the perfect opportunity for us to test online learning, starting with part two of the Directors Toolkit with Peter Burger after the original weekend got cut short pre-Lockdown. It was great to bring the class of directors back together for further teaching, and to lay off the hand sanitiser.

Acting/directing coach Miranda Harcourt also ran two excellent Directing Actors sessions for the Guild. We received so many applications that it was a real blessing that we could stretch the one workshop to two – thanks in part to Miranda’s normally chocker schedule being grounded. Even then, we sadly couldn’t give every applicant a place.

Zoom's Gallery Views of DEGNZ's workshops

Grids within a grid: Participants in workshops with Peter Burger and Miranda Harcourt.

During lockdown, we enjoyed seeing what members made as part of DEGNZ Play, a creative outlet for members to make and share 1-minute videos from inside their bubbles.

Round 1 of the 2020 Table Reads, in association with the NZ Writers Guild, went virtual via Zoom. A cast of seven actors read and contributed their thoughts on a feature film script being written by Nick Ward and directed by Kath Akuhata-Brown (DEGNZ), the lucky draw winners. We’ve got two more rounds this year, likely around a 3-dimensional table. If you’re writing a feature, these are a great opportunity and exclusive to members only.

DEGNZ also scrutinised a bunch of how-to guides and took events online. If you missed any of our live events, you can watch the recordings for Young Creators: Think Outside the Box, Screenlink: The Editor, a Composer’s Friend or Foe? and DEGNZ Forum: Draft Screen Sector Strategy 2030 Panel Discussion, which were held on our Facebook Live.

Now, looking ahead, we’ll be picking up the workshops that are near impossible to adapt for online – our practical actor-director workshops and a new and improved Assistant Editors Course. Our first in-person workshop is on this Friday with the seven directors of the 2020 Women Filmmakers Incubator. Meanwhile, Melbourne-based Kiwi director Jonathan Brough prepares to teach Comedy Directing online in June.

Based on feedback we received from participants, we feel online learning went pretty well. We are interested in developing our professional development programme to provide a mix of in-person and online opportunities in the future, so that more directors and editors can benefit and come together from across New Zealand.

So thanks to learning with us.

Tema Pua
Events & Marketing Manager

Comedy Directing

The real skill of a comedy director is working out what kind of funny suits each project. There are so many different flavours of comedy, and it moves so fast, that deciding on your tone – then being able to execute it – is crucial.

This workshop presented by the Directors & Editors Guild of NZ and taught by award-winning comedy director Jonathan Brough, will be a deep dive into the how of making a scene funny, but also the why – not just how you get the laughs, but where you put them.

The sessions will have a particular emphasis on ‘serious comedy’ – shows like Fleabag, Search Party and Please Like Me – the evolving genre that’s rapidly becoming an audience and broadcaster favourite. We’ll analyse scenes and look at the laughs from all sides, so you can develop your own comedy storytelling taste and style.

About Jonathan Brough

Jonathan is a New Zealand-born director of film & television, based in Melbourne, Australia. Equally acclaimed for his work in comedy and drama, his television credits include The End, a black comedy about assisted dying featuring Frances O’Connor & Harriet Walter that will screen on Sky Atlantic (UK) and Foxtel (Aus) early in 2020, Rosehaven Series 1,2 & 3, Ronny Chieng: International Student, The Family Law, The Unauthorised History of New Zealand & Eating Media Lunch and Outrageous Fortune. With a great affinity for working with comedians, he has won two Australian Directors’ Guild Awards for Best Director, Comedy – in 2016 for his work on Sammy J & Randy in Ricketts Lane and again in 2018 for Rosehaven.

He has also made several acclaimed short films including The Model (Official Selection Cannes Film Festival), Permanent Wave (London & Sydney Film Festivals), No Ordinary Sun (‘Best Short Film’ New Zealand International Film Festival 2005 / Official Selection Edinburgh / Hof / Slamdance) and Snowmen (in competition, Interfilm Berlin/ Pacific Meridian Film Festival).

 

 

Workshop Details

When:
Saturday 13 June, 9:30am – 12:30pm
Sunday 14 June, 9:30am – 12:30pm

Saturday’s session will have a more structured approach, followed by a more fluid and activity-based session on Sunday. Some homework will be sent out to participants to prepare before the workshop.

Where: Online workshop hosted on Zoom

Size: Up to 16

Price: Workshop offered at a discounted rate due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
DEGNZ member – Free
Non-member – $50

To Apply

DEGNZ invites practitioners with a keen interest in directing comedy or comedy drama to apply. You need to have some prior experience directing and/or creating comedy. This doesn’t have to be extensive, and can include short pieces made for online or work that hasn’t been broadcast.

The workshop would benefit emerging directors (with short film/commercial/web series credits) through to more experienced directors looking for fresh insights and inspiration.

DEGNZ will select up to 16 participants. Applicants will be notified.

Applications Close: Tuesday 2 June, 1PM

STEP 1: Complete the registration form below.

STEP 2: Send in one PDF to tema@degnz.co.nz:

  • your CV or bio with filmography, including any links to your comedy work, and
  • a brief, maximum 1-page letter that summarises:
    • why you would like to participate, and
    • your experience directing/creating comedy and any relevant project(s) you might be working on.

Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

Registration Form

 

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

NZFC

Peter Burger

Call for Applications – This two-day workshop is aimed at providing directors with practical tools that they can bring to their productions, both in pre-production and on set. We’ll work on the shape of pre-production (when do I prep what?), how to really read a script, blocking a scene on set, working with actors, the emotions of lenses, running a shoot day, budgeting your shoot time, and managing your own energy (very important!). Attendees will be expected to have done some amount of directing for screen, but want to develop their long form drama-directing experience further. We invite emerging to mid-career directors to apply.

About Peter Burger

Peter Meteherangi Tikao Burger is one of New Zealand’s premiere drama directors. He started his directing career making television commercials in the nineties. In 2001 his first tele-feature Fish Skin Suit won Best Drama in the Qantas NZTV awards, and the same year his short film Tūrangawaewae was selected for Critics’ Week at Cannes. Since then Peter has directed one feature film, seven tele-features, and more than thirty episodes of television drama. Recently, Peter was the lead director on The Dead Lands, a Māori action thriller series for the American network AMC, and is in post production on the upcoming TVNZ/Channel 7 production One Lane Bridge.

Workshop Details

Price:
DEGNZ member – Free
Non-member – $180

Lunch and refreshments provided

When:
Saturday 21 March 2020, 9.30am – 5.30pm
Sunday 22 March 2020, 9.30am – 4.30pm

Where: MTG RM, 2 Kingsland Terrace, Kingsland, Auckland

Travel Allowances:
If selected to attend, DEGNZ Full members may apply for financial assistance of up to $250 (incl. GST) towards their travel costs.

  • DEGNZ has up to 2 travel allowances available for this workshop.
  • Applicants must live in the South Island.
  • For further information and criteria, see here.

To Apply

Applications Close: 4PM, Friday 6 March 

STEP 1: Complete the registration form below.

STEP 2: Send in one PDF to tema@degnz.co.nz:

  • your CV or bio with filmography, and
  • a brief, maximum 1-page letter that summarises why you would like to participate and what you hope to gain from the workshop.

Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

 

Registration Form

 

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Refund Policy: Requests for refunds must be received by Sunday 15 March. Refunds can take up to approximately 10 working days to process.

 

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

NZFC

Congratulations to the five directors who have completed DEGNZ’s third Emerging Women Filmmakers Incubator. Our newest Incubator alumni are Anna Duckworth, Marina Alofagia McCartney, Jessica Sanderson, Claire van Beek and Ursula Williams. You can read more about them here

The directors attended five, tailored workshops over the year. It has been a pleasure fostering these talented filmmakers to make strong career choices, and ‘incubating’ babies Violet and Margot in the process too! Big thanks to the NZFC and Vista Foundation for supporting the Incubator, and to facilitator Shuchi Kothari and all the special guests who came to speak to the directors. 

 

 

One family. One weekend. One hell of a home video. Births Deaths and Marriages is an independent Kiwi feature film written and directed by Bea Joblin and brought to you by the all female creative team of Robin Murphy, Ness Simons and Sophie Lloyd.

Come enjoy a Q&A screening of this slice of life comedy with DEGNZ and Rialto Cinemas as it opens in NZ cinemas. Director Bea Joblin will be present for a half-hour audience Q&A after the film.

“Births, Deaths and Marriages is an assemblage of good ideas, smart choices and some real inventiveness and nous, in the service of a yarn worth telling.” – Stuff.co.nz