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Congratulations to DEGANZ members whose films have been selected for this year’s Hawai’i International Film Festival (HIFF) in November. Furthermore, several films will be having their US Premieres.

Annually, an average of 150 narrative features, documentaries and shorts are chosen from around 1,500 films. HIFF endeavours to recognise new and emerging talent. In addition, the festival spotlights work that explores social and cultural issues.

High Tide, Don’t Hide is a full-length documentary about teenagers discovering that activism, authority and awareness make for a steep learning curve in the race for existence. The film was written by Niva Kay, DEGANZ member and participant in our Emerging Women Filmmakers Incubator 2021. Niva is one of four producer-directors on this film, which is having its US Premiere at HIFF.

Earlier this year, High Tide, Don’t Hide had its World Premiere at the New Zealand Doc Edge Festival, where it won an award for Best New Zealand Editing and a Special Mention in the Best New Zealand Feature category.

The short film Disrupt (pictured above) follows the aftermath of a burglary gone wrong. In it CJ must choose between his whānau or his next fix. DEGANZ member Lisa Greenfield was the editor with Margot Francis (DEGANZ board member) as the supervising editor.

Celia Jasper, writer, director and editor of short film Milk, explores what happens when a young girl sees an old man unable to pay for his milk. It recently won Best Editing at the Venezia Shorts in Italy and is nominated for Best Screenplay at Show Me Shorts.

Teine Sā is a supernatural anthology series based on legends of the Pacific. After centuries of slumber, the ‘Teine Sā’ or ‘the ancient ones’ have been evoked to come into the world once again. Having its US Premiere at HIFF, Teine Sā has a couple of DEGANZ members behind it. Jack Woon was the editor, while Zoey Zhao worked on episode 3 as his assistant editor. Zoey is part of our Incubator 2021.

Inspired by the Black Panther Party in the USA, a group of young radicals from New Zealand follow suit in The Panthers. The six-part mini series made history as the strongest opening week for a drama on TVNZ OnDemand. DEGANZ member Vea Mafile’o directed two episodes.

Director Kathy McRae (DEGNZ) and her team are independently funding a feature documentary that dives deeper into themes explored in Water Baby, their Loading Docs short film.

Water Baby (2019) documented freediving couple Sachiko Fukumoto and William Trubridge’s quest to have a water birth in the ocean. The short documentary has been watched by around 8 million people and is used by educators around the world, motivating expecting parents to explore birthing options

Its sequel, Pacific Mother, will explore the disconnection between the global default maternity system and the needs of families. The filmmaking team are running a live Kickstarter campaign to help them raise NZD 30,000 to help finish the film, including telling the story of Aotearoa’s maternity system.

In Pacific Mother, Sachiko travels from Japan to Hawaii, Tahiti, the Cook Islands and New Zealand to connect with strong ocean women, whose interwoven stories about birth and parenthood inspire a more traditional, connected way of life.

Please support Kathy McRae’s film if you can! Find more information about Pacific Mother on their Kickstarter page. Their fundraising campaign has 19 days remaining.

Director Kathy McRae and producer Migiwa Ozawa in Hawai’i before Covid-19 shut the borders in 2020.