The scheme to support established writers, producers and directors of Māori and/or Pacific heritage names three teams, Blacklands, Piki and South Pacific Pictures, sharing in $200,000.
Blacklands Development’s Ainsley Gardiner and Bailey Mackey have some extremely successful Māori-focused projects between them, including Boy and The GC and propose collaboration between experienced and emerging writers working collectively on producer-driven projects for Film, TV and Digital media.
Blacklands receives $50,000 and has committed a further $25,000.
Piki brings together a group of New Zealand’s funniest storytellers: Taika Waititi, Oscar Kightley, Louis Sutherland, Tusi Tamasese and Madeleine Sami.
Piki means to jump physically in Māori but it also means to lift up, energise, encourage, hype up, and spring forth. This speaks to the slate of films in development – they are entertaining, positive, up-lifting and comedic. Piki is creatively led by Executive Producer Taika Waititi (What We Do In The Shadows, Boy, Eagle vs Shark) and supported by Executive Producing team Carthew Neal and Leanne Saunders.
On Wednesday Waititi and Jemaine Clement’s What We Do in the Shadows ended its first week on release in the #1 slot at the box office.
Piki is seeking a final project from a new writer or writing team to join the development process.
Piki receives $100,000
South Pacific Pictures has the country’s most successful Pacific-themed feature title with Sione’s Wedding. Developers Rachel Jean and Elizabeth Mitchell will work with writers Damon Fepulea’i, Teuila Blakely, Malo Luafutu, Oscar Kightley and Arnette Arapai.
“South Pacific Pictures are excited to be trying out a new development process with a talented crew of experienced and emerging Pacific Island writers,” said Jean.
SPP also made the news this week through its deal with Quickflix to deliver Outrageous Fortune and Go Girls via the online platform, only days after Telecom announced further detail of its upcoming VOD service Lightbox.
South Pacific Pictures receives $50,000 and has committed a further $23,000.
Applications for the second round of He Ara are now being accepted until 19th September 2014.