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Edited by DEGANZ member Chia Chi Hsu, web series Inked is a milestone in Aotearoa’s television history — our first funded Chinese bilingual drama. That may seem surprising given that Chinese have been in New Zealand since the 1860s, the first non-European and Pacific Island immigrants to arrive. Although Inked reflects the lives of more recent Chinese immigrants, it speaks to generations of Asian New Zealanders.

The eight-episode series follows Jiayue, a 1.5 generation pharmacy student secretly apprenticing at a tattoo studio while she struggles to connect with her unhappy father. Technically, Inked contains four dialects of Chinese: Mandarin, Cantonese, Nankinese and Shanghainese. It has subtitles in both English and Simplified Chinese.

Chia cut the web series while completing a DEGANZ Drama Editor Attachment with editor Dan Kircher. When we spoke to Chia about her attachment, she said, “Bit by bit, what I had picked up from the attachment, I was able to apply them directly to what I was working on: from how to organise a project for a drama, how to tackle the notes, to tactfully dealing with tricky situations.”

Chia was part of a diverse, Asian-led cast and crew. Playwright Renee Liang, who had a small cameo, wrote on why Inked is significant for Aotearoa and what it was like behind the scenes.

According to Renee, “There is comedy throughout, but the observations in Inked – especially of the complex negotiation of family relationships when those involved are trying not to fall into the gaps between cultures – are insightful, deep and above all, real.”

The series debuted as a single package on Prime in late September. It is now available to stream on Neon and Sky Go.


Celebrating filmmakers of great web series content from across the globe, NZ Web Fest returns this year with a line-up that includes works from DEGNZ members.

100 Year Forecast

100 Year Forecast (pictured above) is a five-part documentary series from The Spinoff exploring what we know about climate change, the implications it will have on Aotearoa New Zealand and what we can do moving forward. The series was cut by DEGNZ member Ben Chesters.

The Collective

Rachale Davies’ The Collective is an eight-part doco series about six young musicians taking part in a youth music programme that pushes them into compelling journeys of self-discovering.

Chloe and the Crash Test

Selected for the Pilot category is Chloe and the Crash Test, an original comedy series from Mt Maunganui directed by Anton Steel. The show follows a group of 30-somethings as they try to get their chaotic lives on track.

The Handy Circle

Another selected for the Pilot Category, Samuel Shelton’s web series The Handy Circle is a drama / comedy set in a world where puppets and humans live side by side. Due to the new Puppet distancing act, puppets and human relations are outlawed; puppets have to learn to operate themselves while humans must come to terms with not being able to operate their puppet companions that they love to the verge of obsession. The Handy Circle is a recovery program to help the heavily addicted.

The NZFC have announced that 19 successful projects will receive funding as part of Ara ki Te Puna Kairangi – The Premium Development Fund, with a total of 1.5 million offered. The successful projects represent a broad array of ideas with the potential to engage both local and international audiences, and includes projects by our very own DEGNZ members.

Hannah Marshall will go ahead with another season of drama series Alibi with her production company Plus6Four Entertainment Limited.

Roseanne Liang, Ally Xue, JJ Fong and Perlina Lau, alongside Creamerie Ltd, have received funding for a second season of the post-apocalyptic black comedy Creamerie.

Max Currie with Autonomouse Limited, has received funding for another season of Rūrangi, a queer and trans-positive drama.

Congratulations to all our members. We can’t wait to see the projects come to life.

Season 3 of Sui Generis is underway and the creators are crowdfunding to shoot the last episode of this anthology series. The series’ director, Roberto Nascimento (DEGNZ) and his production team are aiming for a $6000 goal for their boosted campaign. Each episode of Sui Generis is a stand-alone story with its own style, conceived and written by members and allies of the LQBTQIA+ community.

The final episode is titled Vanessa. This story is inspired by the idea of anonymity – with being unknown in a new city, what would you do? What could you do? What version of yourself would be presented… and would you take advantage of that?

Here are some ways you can help them:

  • Contribute to the campaign. Any donation, no matter how big or small, will be truly appreciated and celebrated. We know the times are a-challenging, so if you can’t contribute financially perhaps you could…
  • Share this campaign with your friends and extended whānau.
  • Help spread the word
  • Give them a hand – they are currently in search of a costume design/wardrobe person OR a runner.

View the campaign

Loner is a six-part web series, directed by DEGNZ member and Incubator alumna Lauren Porteous, that explores friendship, love and loneliness and reminds us that the only way things change is through action. Loner is now available on NZ On Screen. The series won Best Narrative Director at the 2020 NZ Web Fest Awards. 

Extrovert Mel (Lucinda Hare from Auckward Love and SMOKO) convinces her friend Charlotte (Gloria Faesen-Kloet from Three Wise Cousins) to head out to a party. Their nights end very differently. Charlotte bumps into a kimono-wearing man writing a screenplay. But there are more surprises in store.

Watch now