WAIROA MAORI FILM AWARDS 2017

WAIROA MAORI FILM AWARDS 2017
PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JUNE 3 2017: The Wairoa Maori Film Awards were held last night at the Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa. Here are the award winners:

T-TAHITI PRIZE - return trip to Tahiti to travel to the T-Tahiti Film Festival
Award to: TAMA by Jared Flitcroft & Jack O'Donnell

Moana Prize (Best Pasifika Short) decided by the Moana Jury
Award to: MARIA by Jeremiah Tauamiti

Whenua Prize (Māori Short) decided by the Whenua Jury
Award to: TAMA by Jared Flitcroft & Jack O'Donnell

Audience Award - Maori Short Film
Award to: TAMA by Jared Flitcroft & Jack O'Donnel

Audience Award - Maori Short Film - Actor
Award to: Eric Matthews as Tama, in TAMA by Jared Flitcroft & Jack O'Donnel

Audience Award -Maori Short Film - Actress
Award to: Aidee Walker, in LAUNDRY by Becs Arahanga

Mana Kainga Award - for a community making contribution to Maori film making
Award to: NATALIE - Qianna Titore & the Hokianga community

Te Wairoa Award - For Contribution to Media in Wairoa
Ratima Hauraki & Zach Stark

WMFF WIFT Mana Wahine Award
Award to: CHRISTINA ASHER

WMFF PIFT Mana Pasifika Award
Award to: CRAIG FASI of the Pollywood Film Festival

International Indigenous Award
Award to: FROM UP NORTH by Trudy Stewart, Janine Windolph & Noel Starblanket

Mana Wairoa Award - for contribution to the advancement of indigenous rights
Award to: LGBTQI+ AOTEAROA THEN & NOW by Teresa Wells & Qmunnity Gisborne Youth

TONI HUATA TO HEADLINE FESTIVAL GALA

MAY 15, 2017: Nuhaka, Aotearoa, New Zealand

Organisers of this year's Wairoa Maori Film Festival are proud to announce that Toni Huata will be the headline performer at the Wairoa Maori Film Awards in June.

From London jazz clubs to European arts festivals, Toni Huata's style and strength
as a performer allows her to stand confidently in the Māori and non-Māori worlds.
 
Toni is a Māori songtress, actor, performer, director and producer whose talent allows her to
perform at various music and dance festivals both nationally and around the world including
support to The Neville Brothers (USA).
 
Toni has performed in London-UK, Basque, Spain, Holland, Germany, Canada, Hawaii,
Rarotonga, Manila-Philippines, Palau, America Samoa, Solomon Islands, Australia, China,
Hungary, Austria and Japan.
 
Her performances overseas have earned her praise:
 
"Toni brings forth sounds and feelings from the past, mixes it with today's international
musical influences to present a sound for the future" -Tū Mai Magazine, NZ
 
"Aotearoa's very own Whitney Houston"- Cook Island News
 
"Maori Diva sings in London" - NZ News, UK
 
"Her stunning voice has been heard before but 'Te Māori e' is a visual and aural delight"
- Real Groovy, NZ
 
Constantly in demand, audiences are captivated as Toni adds to the allurement of our
exotic shores making Maori language “sexy’”.– Tu Mai Magazine, NZ
 
Hailing from Hastings in Hawke's Bay, New Zealand, Toni says she was surrounded by
an eclectic array of influences including the Anglican Church, choir, tap dancing,
musical theatre and Mäori cultural performance. She affiliates to Ngäti Kahungunu and
Rongowhakaata tribes, and is also of Lebanese, German, Scandinavian and Irish decent.
 
Toni's music reflects her deep spiritual roots however vocals range from jazz to soul ballads,
opera to haka. Toni graduated in music at Whitireia Polytechnic, than toured throughout NZ
for four years in Jim Moriarty's Te Rakau Hua o Te Wao Tapu theatre company. Adding more
strings to her bow, Toni’s voice features in Peter Jackson’s King Kong and she performs in
various theatre including her starring role as Hine-nui-te-Po in the NZ renowned aerial theatre
production of ‘Maui – One Man against the Gods’, World of Wearable Arts, New Zealand festival etc.
 
“Toni Huata brings serene strength to Hine, and shows great focus and vocal control, by
continuing to sing with effortless beauty, as she flies across the stage”. – Theatre review, NZ
 
Toni has a EP Kahungunu Maranga (2016) and FIVE award winning, chart topping solo
albums, TOMOKIA (2014), HOPUKIA (2012), WHITI (2010), MAURI TO (2003) and
TE MAORI E (2001) where she continues collaborate with producer Paddy Free and
renowned composer, percussionist Gareth Farr (Rugby World Cup 2011 opening
ceremony music). Toni’s voice also featured in the Fan Fare music by Gareth Farr for all
48 RWC 2011 games as the teams entered the fields to play.
 
Toni is also a motivational speaker, vocal coach, stage craft tutor, event organizer and
mother of two.

TICKETS TO THE AWARDS NIGHT

Tickets to the Awards Night are only $40 and can be purchased from Eventfinder.

MOANA & WHENUA AWARDS

POSSUM by Dave Whitehead

POSSUM by Dave Whitehead

5 MAY 2017: Nuhaka, Aotearoa, New Zealand

The Wairoa Maori Film Festival is announcing two new prizes for 2017. The Moana Award is for the best short film directed by a person of Pasifika descent. The Whenua Award is for the the best short film directed by a person of Maori descent.

The finalists for the Moana Award are:

LADY EVA by Dean Hamer, Joe Wilson and Hina Wong-Kalu (Hawaiian)
MARIA by Jay Tauamiti (Pasifika)
WAITING by Samuel Kami (Pasifika)
I HAVE CURLS by Maria Vai (Pasifika)
LET THE MOUNTAIN SPEAK by Vilsoni Hereniko (Pasifika)
RAIDED LOVE by Destiny Momoisea (Pasifika)

The finalists for the Whenua Award are:

POSSUM by Dave Whitehead (Maori)
LAUNDRY by Becs Arahanga (Maori)
NATALIE by Qianna Titore (Maori)
TAMA by Jared Flitcroft (Maori) and Jack O'Donnell (Non-Maori)
MANNAHATTA by Renae Maihi (Maori) 
THE PROMISE OF PIHA by Hanelle Harris (Maori)

Each film is being previewed by members of the two juries, the Moana Jury and the Whenua Jury.

Moana Jury

  • Leanne Ferrer, Executive Director of Pacific Islanders in Communication in Hawai'i
  • Tiairani Drollet-Le Caill, Founder and Festival Director of T-Tahiti Film Festival in Tahiti
  • Craig Fasi, Founder and Festival Director of Pollywood Film Festival in Aotearoa
  • Stella Muller, Chief of Enlightenment at Bright Sunday in Aotearoa

Whenua Jury

  • Dr. Ella Henry, esteemed academic currently at AUT, media maven and famed "Aunty" of "Ask Your Aunties"
  • Dale Husband, Radio Host of the Waatea Breakfast Show, celebrity at large across Aotearoa
  • Tere Harrison, film maker, activist, writer, creative, healer
  • Tame Iti, artist, activist, creative extraordinaire


The Moana Award and the Whenua Award will be announced at the Wairoa Maori Film Awards on Saturday June 3, Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa.

ENDS

Keynote Speaker Tame Iti Announced

PRESS RELEASE: MAY 5 2017: Nuhaka, Aotearoa, New Zealand
 
The organisers of this year's Wairoa Maori Film Festival are proud to announce the keynote speaker for this year's gala Wairoa Maori Film Awards night: Tame Iti.
 
Tame Iti needs no introduction. Here is his biography from TEDx New Zealand:
 
Tame Iti (Ngai Tuhoe / Waikato / Te Arawa)
Tame Iti is known as many things… Activist, Artist, Terrorist and Cyclist. Literally wearing his Tuhoe heritage on his face, Iti is hard to miss in a crowd despite being just 5ft 4″ tall. His 40 year history of controversial and theatrical displays of political expression have included pitching a tent on parliament grounds and calling it the Maori embassy, Shooting a national flag in front of government officials and the curious spate of public meetings where he appeared with a ladder so as to speak eye to eye with officials who were seated on stage. Iti explores how the old saying of “Te ka nohi ki te ka nohi” (Dealing with it eye to eye) creates a far more productive space for open dialogue around any issue. “No one can tell you that you are not important and your experience does not matter and if they do… I challenge them to say it to your face… where they can see your eyes and feel your breath.”

"It is a great privilege to bring a visionary such as Tame to Wairoa," says Festival Director Leo Koziol. "Last year, the Maori Film Festival took Maori and Canadian First Nations films to Taneatua Gallery. This year, we hope to take a Canadian First Nations delegation to Taneatua and Ruatoki." Ruatoki was the location of two early Maori film festivals in the 1990s.
 
Tame Iti recently opened the Taneatua Gallery. The Tāneatua Gallery is a contemporary art gallery, exhibiting works by international artists, and emerging artists and shows. The Taneatua Gallery was established and is the result of a dream and a strong desire to support artists and the people of Tūhoe within the community.
 
It is hoped his visit to Wairoa will spark interest in establishing a similar gallery for Ngati Kahungunu and Tūhoe artists in the Wairoa community.
 
As well as a keynote from Tame Iti, there will be a range of film awards presented on the night. Amongst these awards is the recently announced Women in Film & Television NZ Mana Wahine Award to one of New Zealand's most committed and passionate advocates for our Māori and wider New Zealand screen industry - Christina Asher.

ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
Tickets for the Awards Gala and Film Festival can be booked through Eventfinder - Maori Film Awards only $40, Full Festival Pass including Awards $140.
The Wairoa Māori Film Festival this year has 26 screenings with 70 shorts, and seven feature dramas/documentaries. Screenings are held in Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka, famed for featuring in scenes from John O'Shea's Broken Barrier in 1955. For the third year, the festival will also be at the reopened Gaiety Theatre in Wairoa. Keynote speaker at the Awards Night will be infamous activist and esteemed artist Tame Iti. Premiering at the festival will be a collection of "two spirit" collaborative short films shot in Saskatchewan last year. Guests in attendance will include international film makers from Tahiti, Hawaii and Canada. A selection of the Māori and Pasifika short films screening at the festival will go on to comprise the New Zealand International Film Festival Ngā Whanaunga programme, which will premiere in Auckland later this year. Closing night is "Bush Cinema" underground shorts at Morere hot springs, with the pools open late into the night. The Wairoa Māori Film Festival is sponsored by the New Zealand Film Commission, Ngā Aho Whakaari, Radio Waatea, Te Matarae O Te Wairoa Trust and Wairoa District Council. The entire programme will available for viewing next week at: www.kiaora.tv
For media enquiries please contact Leo Koziol, Festival Director, Wairoa Māori Film Festival, on maorimovies@gmail.com.

Photo from "Price of Peace" Director Kim Webby, Producer Christina Milligan

New Cinema at Wairoa Maori Film Festival

"Mannahatta" by Renae Maihi

"Mannahatta" by Renae Maihi

PRESS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
26 April 2017, Nuhaka, Aotearoa New Zealand


A diverse range of new cinematic works will be presented at the Wairoa Maori Film Festival this June. Festival organisers have released the first announcement of Maori and Pasifika short film works screening at the festival this year. A selection of these films will go on to screen at NZIFF in NZ's main centres, as part of the "Nga Whanaunga Maori Pasifika" programme.

Join us in Wairoa, Friday June 2 Monday June 5, at Kahungunu Marae (Nuhaka) and the Gaiety Theatre (Wairoa). Tickets on sale now.

LAUNDRY by Becs Arahanga

'Laundry' is a funny, light-hearted, and cringingly relatable story about love life after marriage. Starring Jarod Rawiri ("Shortland Street") and Aidee Walker. The first short film from Becs Arahanga.

MANNAHATTA by Renae Maihi

In the city that never sleeps, wanders a ghost that cannot rest.

When an ancient Native American spirit lost in an in-between world is seen by pizza worker Ivan he attempts to get a message across.

But Ivan isn’t interested, he is on a oneweek trial in this busy New York City pizzeria and cannot afford to lose the job. But some ghosts cannot rest until they are heard.

Mannahatta - a compelling and at times humorous black & white film about peace & understanding.

Mannahatta is the new short film from Ngati Whakaue/Ngapuhi film maker Renae Maihi.

 DATE NIGHT by Kahurangi Carter

DATE NIGHT is a colourful New Zealand comedy/drama short film that captures a day in the life of Lily(Carter), a beautiful and caring Maori solo mum and her two high voltage children Tahi and Pipi. Lilly wants nothing more than to go on her date night but life gets in the way.

LAND OF THE TANIWHA by Aidan Otene Dickens

Taniwha: [Tanifa]
“Supernatural creatures in New Zealand Māori tradition, similar to serpents and dragons in other cultures, said to hide in the ocean, rivers, lakes or caves.”

Wiremu is an 11 year old Maori boy who misses his dead father and doesn’t get on with his new stepfather, John. John is having difficulty adjusting to his new role and frequently butts heads with moody Wiremu. At school, Wiremu asks his Te Reo teacher how to call a taniwha. What follows is a story of forgiveness and redemption.

TE AO NUI O NGA HUE

‘Te Ao O Ngā Hui' (The Wide World of the Gourd) is a short experimental film completed in 2016. It explores how taonga pūoro practitioners (traditional Māori instruments) come into dialogue with the voices of the atua, or the multiple deities. This project was made in collaboration with Alistair Fraser and Russell G. Shaw, as part of a wider research project on musical composition and perception with taonga pūoro in Aotearoa/New Zealand (2016). This film accentuates how taonga pūoro practitioners utilise their senses to imagine, empathise and furthermore resonant with something in the environment, before turning these experiences into music.

LET THE MOUNTAIN SPEAK by Vilsoni Hereniko

A visual treat of the world's tallest mountain on earth where telescopes reach out to starry skies, this visual poem accompanied by stunning images and ethereal music alludes also to human relationships where sacred and secular values collide and search for meaning.

LADY EVA by Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu (Tonga)

A brave young transgender woman sets off on a journey to become her true self in the conservative Pacific Island Kingdom of Tonga – with a little inspiration from Tina Turner along the way.

HO'OMAU (Hawai'i)

In the wake of a significant migratory period in ancient Hawai‘i, some have arrived to find abundance, assimilation and peace, while others have found only rejection and war. Anchored in the belief that integration will only bring suffering for his people, a young chief and his followers set out to rid their district of newcomers.

Lehua, a daring yet spiteful young girl who has lost her home in the chaos of war, hides out in a dark cave with her mother and infant brother. She longs to be out in the wild fighting the sinister dangers that lurk outside the cave, but when her grandfather returns wounded Lehua soon finds herself at the forefront of the struggle between life and death, forced to make the most difficult decision of her life.

Directed by Kenji Doughty.

THE BRIDGE (Hawai'i)

Pono, a tenacious seven-year old boy lives with his family in a five-story tree house deep in the rainforest of Hawaii's Manoa Valley. Pono's father provides critical ancestral knowledge through cultural transmission to his youngest descendant. After tragedy strikes the family, Pono's mother blames her youngest son and repeatedly pushes him away. Pono, however, is the heir to critical cultural practices, which can help her resolve her inner conflict between Christianity/religion and Hawaiian spirituality, but only if she can concede to Hawaiian culture through the encouragement of the son she has alienated.

Directed by Cindy Iodice, Producers Connie M. Florez and Ken Monroe.

JE SUIS UNE FLEUR (Tahiti)

This is the story of a boy who sees itself as a girl. A difference which will be accepted badly. He will hate his sex for the benefit of his internal feeling. A drama on the study of the acceptance of difference. "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" ( W.Oscar )

TURTLE ISLAND FOCUS FOR FILM FESTIVAL

PRESS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 26, 2017, Nuhaka, Aotearoa New Zealand


FILM WORKS FROM CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES will be a focus of the Wairoa Maori Film Festival this year. "This year, we continue our partnership with films festivals from 'Turtle Island' as the North American continent is known to the indigenous people of these lands," says Festival Director Leo Koziol.

Last year, the Asinabka Film & Media Art Festival of Ottawa, Canada, curated a programme of music-themed short films for the Wairoa Maori Film Festival. In 2017, they have curated "Year Zero" a collection of decidedly activist film works.

"As a collection of short films by Indigenous directors from Canada, and programmed by Indigenous curators, Year Zero is a subversive critique of Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation," says Howard Adler and Christopher Wong of Asinabka.

While Canada celebrates its 150 th birthday, this is a complicated matter for Indigenous peoples in Canada. Year Zero includes films that challenge Canadian nationalism, films that highlight the extermination of the buffalo, films that show the horrors enacted on Indigenous children at residential schools, films that reveal the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, films that discuss racism, displacement, and the failure of the justice systems, and films that show the strength and resurgence of Indigenous peoples."

We are also proud to present a selection of films from Saskatchewan, in cooperation with the mispon film festival in Regina. Festival Director Leo Koziol traveled to mispon last December, and worked on a collaborative "two spirit" project with Howard Adler (of Asinabka) and Regina-based director Candy Renae Fox. The result is two films "Two Spirit Fry Bread" and "Two Spirit Tales" that will be screened at Wairoa this year.

Here is an image from the "Two Spirit Fry Bread" short film photo shoot:

Below are details from the "Year Zero" programme and other Canada / US indigenous short films screening at the Wairoa Maori Film Festival this year:

YEAR ZERO: A Subversive Critique of Canada 150

The "Year Zero" programme includes:

Ute Kanata (Here in Canada)

Virginie Michel (Innu) • 2015 • 2:27 • Canada • Innu Language
With a spin on the traditional Canadian National Anthem, here the “Ô Kanata“ of Virginie Michel is sung in the Innu Language, and demands that the presence of Canada’s First Nations be recognized in the national narratives.

Macrocosmic
Craig Commanda (Algonquin) • 2016 • 3:30 • Canada • Anishinaabe
The beauty of the natural world is captured in extreme close-ups, with narration in the Algonquin Language.

Sisters and Brothers
Kent Monkman (Cree) • 2016 • 3:44 • Canada • No Dialogue
In a pounding critique of Canada’s colonial history, this short film draws parallels between the annihilation of the bison in the 1890s and the devastation inflicted on the Indigenous population by the residential school system. Part of the Souvenir series, it’s one of four films by First Nations filmmakers that remix archival footage to address Indigenous identity and representation, reframing Canadian history through a contemporary lens.

Stolen
Kawennáhere Devery Jacobs (Mohawk) • 7:00 • 2016 • Canada
Sheena, a lost teenager, is placed in a girl’s home. Seemingly forgotten and yearning for a life of freedom, she runs away, only to be picked up by a dangerous stranger. The directorial debut by actor Kawennáhere Devery Jacobs is a sober commentary on missing Indigenouswomen.

Gods Acre
Kelton Steopanowich (Métis) • 2016 • 15 min. Canada
Lorne Cardinal stars in this unsettling, powerful short of a man determined to protect his land at all cost. As the water slowly rises in a frighteningly familiar future, the man must choose to abandon all that he knows or give in to the rising tide.

Four Faces of the Moon
Amanda Strong (Michif) •12:56 • 2016 • Canada
Four Faces of the Moon is an animated short told in four chapters, exploring the reclamation of language and Nationhood and peeling back the layers of Canada's colonial history.

Wake Up!
Jessie Short (Métis)• 2015 • 5:58 • Canada • English
\A woman transforms into Louis Riel in an exploration of Métis identity

OTHER "TURTLE ISLAND" WORKS SCREENING

From Up North
Trudy Stewart - 2017 - 13:25 - Canada - English
From Up North is a short, poetic, documentary on the director's experience recording Indian Residential School survivors' stories for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. 

Why We’re Here: Stories From Standing Rock
Candy Renae Fox (Cree) • 2016 • 7:30 • Canada/USA • English
A short documentary about the Two-Spirit Camp at Standing Rock.

Snip
Terril Calder (Métis) - 2016 - 15:01 - Canada - English
The power of Indigenous storytelling in between the lines of colonial history.

She is Water
Darlene Naponse (Anishinaabe) - 2016 - 13:00 - Canada
Mary, an Ojibway teenager is taken by a stranger after a day out with her friends. She returns to Mother Earth and the Natural World seeks retribution.

In The Beginning Was Water and Sky
Ryan Ward - 2017 - 13:28 - USA
A haunting and visually stunning fairytale that blends fantasy and real life events. Two Native American children navigate the dark corners of American history trying to find their way back to a home that may be lost forever.

Our thanks go out to the Asinabka and mispon film festivals.

 

 

Announcing the WIFT NZ Mana Wahine Award recipient 2017

Women in Film & Television (WIFT) NZ and the Wairoa Māori Film Festival Inc. are delighted to announce the 2017 WIFT NZ Mana Wahine Award recipient is one of New Zealand's most committed and passionate advocates for our Māori and wider New Zealand screen industry - Christina Asher.

The award will be presented at the Wairoa Māori Film Awards at the iconic Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa, on Saturday June 3.

Christina Asher (Ngāti Tuwharetoa, Ngā Rauru, Te Atihaunui-a-Paparangi, Ngāti Pūkenga, Ngāti Rangiwewehi) is a previous Board member of WIFT, current Chair of Ngā Aho Whakaari, and was part of the Te Manu Aute collective of Māori film-makers that preceded Ngā Aho Whakaari in the 1980s. Alongside her selfless contribution to the development of the screen industry for women and Māori over the last 30 years, through these organisations and her mentoring of individuals Christina has been involved in many aspects of film and television production for more than 40 years.

Starting on television as a dancer, Christina has acted in, choreographed, produced and directed short films and documentaries, and worked as an international casting director (most recently on worldwide box office hit Moana). She is a staunch supporter of emerging Māori screen talent. Christina directed her first documentary in 1993 as part of the first Indigenous International co-production television series From Spirit to Spirit; her most recent - What Are We Going To Do About Mum? - in 2016 for the Pakipumeka documentary series on Māori Television.

Christina has been, and will continue to be a bold, bright and beautiful advocate and supporter of Māori and women in film and television.

ABOUT THE AWARD
The WIFT Mana Wāhine Award recognises and supports the achievements of Māori women in film and television who work tirelessly, diligently and with vision to support and promote Māori culture, Te Reo Māori, Tikanga Māori and the welfare and stories of wāhine. The Award was first initiated in 2011 by Wairoa Māori Film Festival director Leo Koziol and his mother Huia Koziol.

ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
Tickets for the Awards Gala and Film Festival can be booked through Eventfinder - Maori Film Awards only $40, Full Festival Pass including Awards $140.

The Wairoa Māori Film Festival this year has 26 screenings with 70 shorts, and seven feature dramas/documentaries. Screenings are held in Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka, famed for featuring in scenes from John O'Shea's Broken Barrier in 1955. For the third year, the festival will also be at the reopened Gaiety Theatre in Wairoa. Keynote speaker at the Awards Night will be infamous activist and esteemed artist Tame Iti. Premiering at the festival will be a collection of "two spirit" collaborative short films shot in Saskatchewan last year. Guests in attendance will include international film makers from Tahiti, Hawaii and Canada. A selection of the Māori and Pasifika short films screening at the festival will go on to comprise the New Zealand International Film Festival Ngā Whanaunga programme, which will premiere in Auckland later this year. Closing night is "Bush Cinema" underground shorts at Morere hot springs, with the pools open late into the night. The Wairoa Māori Film Festival is sponsored by the New Zealand Film Commission, Ngā Aho Whakaari, Radio Waatea, Te Matarae O Te Wairoa Trust and Wairoa District Council. The entire programme will available for viewing next week at: www.kiaora.tv

For media enquiries please contact Leo Koziol, Festival Director, Wairoa Māori Film Festival, on maorimovies@gmail.com or mob: 027 2808729.

PACIFIC ALLIANCE ESTABLISHED

Leo Koziol (Wairoa Maori Film Festival), Alex Lee (Doc Edge), Mareva Leu (FIFO Tahiti) and Cory Tong (representing Hawaii International Film Festival).

Leo Koziol (Wairoa Maori Film Festival), Alex Lee (Doc Edge), Mareva Leu (FIFO Tahiti) and Cory Tong (representing Hawaii International Film Festival).

The PADISA Pacific Alliance for Documentary and Interactive Storytelling was established today in Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington, New Zealand.

Present were representatives of Doc Edge, FIFO Tahiti, HIFF Hawaii and Wairoa Maori Film Festival. Also part of PADISA will be Annu Aboro New Caledonia, PICCOM Hawaii, Nga Aho Whakaari, PIFT NZ and Antenna Documentary Film Festival ( Australia).

Mauri Ora to Alex Lee and Dan Shanan of DocEdge who lead this initiative.

Wairoa Maori Film Festival is proud to support and be a part of this kaupapa!

MANA WAHINE AWARD 2015

PRESS RELEASE: From Women in Film & Television New Zealand, Tamaki Makarau, 13 May 2016

In 2016, Wairoa Māori Film Festival and Women in Film & Television (NZ) Inc. will be conferring the WIFT Mana Wāhine Award on two recipients, who have extensive careers in film, theatre and television, who are both trail-blazers as Māori women writers, actors and directors, and who have worked tirelessly for decades to support and nurture other Māori in film and television.

The awards will be presented at the Wairoa Maori Film Awards Gala Evening at the iconic Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa, on Saturday 4 June.

The WIFT NZ MANA WAHINE AWARDS FOR 2016 are jointly awarded to Nancy Brunning and Rachel House for their prolific contribution to theatre and film, both in front of and behind the camera. Rachel and Nancy exemplify what it means to be Mana Wāhine and the committee strongly felt that both women needed to be awarded with this honour to acknowledge the long and very active contribution both have made to the burgeoning industry. In a year where female participation in film is looked at with scrutiny, Nancy and Rachel give stand out lead performances in two of the year’s most successful films and that on its own deserves celebration.

Rachel House: Rachel has acted in some of New Zealand’s most critically and commercially successful films, including Whale Rider, Eagle vs Shark, Boy, White Lies, Dark Horse and this year, a starring role in ‘Hunt for the Wilderpeople’. Graduating from Toi Whakaari in 1992,  House won the Chapman Tripp Most Promising Female Newcomer of the Year Award for her performance in the one-woman show Nga Pou Wahine in 1995. In 2002 she won Most Outstanding Performance for critically acclaimed Woman Far Walking and in 2003 Best Supporting Actress in An Enemy of the People. House has directed several theatrical performances, winning the 2001 Director of the Year awards at both the Chapman Tripp Theatre Awards and the New Zealand Listener Awards for her direction of the play Have Car Will Travel. In 2012 House directed the Māori-language version of Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida, performed at London's Globe Theatre. House attended the Prague Film School, 2007-2008. Her film-directing debut short, The Winter Boy, screened in New Zealand and other international film festivals. In 2012, House was made a NZ Art’s Laureate.

Nancy Brunning: Nancy has an extensive career acting in film, theatre and television, as a director for stage and screen, and acting coach, for Oscar-nominated short film ‘Two Cars One Night’. Nancy graduated from Toi Whakaari in 1991 and in 1992 she won the award for Most Promising Female Actor at the Chapman Tripp Theatre Awards for the play Ngā Wahine. She also became one of the best-known faces on New Zealand television in the role of Nurse Jaki Manu in ‘Shortland Street’. Nancy has performed in diverse productions, from the play Hide n’ Seek, which toured New Zealand and Australia, to the ‘Once Were Warriors’ sequel, ‘What becomes of the broken hearted’. A speaker of Te Reo Māori, Brunning has also worked as a theatre director, cultural advisor and script consultant. She received a Best Actress nomination at the 2009 Qantas Film & TV Awards for her role in the movie Strength of Water. In 2008 Brunning directed the short film ‘Journey to Ihipa’, which screened at film festivals in New Zealand, Vladivostok and New York. This year, Nancy played a leading role in the Lee Tamahori directed film ‘Mahana’.

The WIFT Mana Wāhine Award recognises and supports the achievements of Māori Women in film and television who work tirelessly, diligently and with vision to support and promote Māori culture, Te Reo Māori, Tikanga Māori and the welfare and stories of wāhine. The Award was first initiated in 2011 by Wairoa Māori Film Festival director Leo Koziol and his mother Huia Koziol.

Tickets for the Awards Gala and Film Festival can be booked at Eventfinder

http://www.eventfinda.co.nz/2016/wairoa-maori-film-festival/wairoa

The Wairoa Māori Film Festival screenings are held in Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka, famed for featuring in scenes from John O’Shea’s BROKEN BARRIER in 1955, and at the reopened Gaiety Theatre in Wairoa. The Wairoa Māori Film Festival is sponsored by the New Zealand Film Commission, Te Matarae O Te Wairoa Trust and Wairoa District Council. The entire programme can be viewed online at www.kiaora.tv

About the Festival

“The Wairoa Maori Film Festival is a film festival like no other! Guests are welcomed in a traditional Maori powhiri welcoming ceremony, and can stay at the marae (in the cinema!) or at nearby Morere mineral springs, Mahia beach, or Wairoa township. The Festival prides itself on a laid-back and relaxed energy, a spiritual nourishment both on screen and off. It has a reputation for rich and sincere narratives presented in a gentle and healing marae space. It is also a collaborative space where film makers and creatives can connect; short film, documentary and feature dramatic projects have developed over a cup of tea in the marae, and some of these new works will be screening for the first time this year, at the 11th anniversary gathering.

On Saturday there will be a special Wairoa Maori Film Awards Gala evening, preceded by a first-ever screening of "Ukaipo Whenua" by Kararaina Rangihau (a local Tuhoe Waikaremoana film maker).

The Wairoa Maori Film Awards Gala is once again the centerpiece, with presentation of the WIFT Mana Wahine Award, keynote speaker Dr. Rangimarie Rose Pere, live musical performances by Melody McKiver from Canada, and a curated media art projection!” – LEO KOZIOL, DIRECTOR OF THE WAIROA MAORI FILM FESTIVAL

For further information please contact Patricia Watson, National Manager of WIFT NZ on 09

373 4071 or patricia@wiftnz.org.nz