Eight world premieres, and one local premiere, of New Zealand documentaries have been announced today for the New Zealand International Film Festival (NZIFF).
NZ artists, artisans, extreme sportspeople and energetic adventurers will be celebrated on screen throughout the country from late July. Highlights include Head Like a Hole receiving the biopic treatment in Swagger of Thieves, 40 years of gay history as told through personal interviews in 100 Men, and the life’s work, and approach to life, of Swiss-born contemporary jeweller Kobi Bosshard in Kobi.
“A banner year for NZ documentaries continues with our biggest ever New Zealand documentary lineup. We can’t wait for NZ audiences to meet these characters on screen, and perhaps in person at NZIFF screenings. And we’re thrilled to provide this platform for NZ filmmakers to find a wide audience for their films and at the same time receive some box office income in return. Join us to celebrate these New Zealand stories and New Zealand story-tellers come July,” says NZIFF Director Bill Gosden.
The confirmed New Zealand documentaries are:
100 Men (World Premiere)
100 Men reflects on 40 years of gay history via a countdown of Kiwi filmmaker Paul Oremland’s most memorable shags, featuring candid and moving interviews with past lovers.
Bill Direen: A Memory of Others (World Premiere)
Filmmaker Simon Ogston hits the road with NZ writer, poet, indie-rocker Bill Direen as he explores the cultural landscape and presents a series of strikingly diverse live performances.
Kobi (World Premiere)
This warm and humorous doco about Kobi Bosshard, widely regarded as the grandfather of contemporary New Zealand jewellery, explores his philosophy of life and work, as captured by his daughter Andrea Bosshard.
The Free Man (pictured, top)
World-champion freestyle skier Jossi Wells is the subject of Kiwi filmmaker Toa Fraser’s absorbing examination of extreme sportspeople and the relationship between fear and true freedom.
Free Theatre (World Premiere)
Shirley Horrocks’ tenth NZIFF documentary relates the storied 37-year history of Christchurch’s often provocative, always daring Free Theatre, creators of countless extraordinary productions and performance events.
No Ordinary Sheila (World Premiere)
In Hugh Macdonald’s fascinating and inspiring doco, his aunt, writer and illustrator Sheila Natusch retraces a long life dedication to sharing her understanding and love of New Zealand’s nature and history.
Swagger of Thieves (World Premiere)
Taking its cue from its subjects, Julian Boshier’s all-access portrait of Head Like a Hole’s Nigel ‘Booga’ Beazley and Nigel Regan at home, on the road and in full roar on stage tells it like no other NZ music doco ever dared.
Team Tibet: Home Away From Home (World Premiere)
Thuten Kesang, New Zealand’s first Tibetan refugee in 1967, recounts his fascinating and inspiring story and the environmental and political issues that have made him a tireless advocate of the Tibetan cause.
What Lies That Way (World Premiere)
Filmmaker Paul Wolffram immerses himself in the spiritual world of the Lak people in the rainforests of southern New Ireland, Papua New Guinea in this heady combination of ethnography and lyrical expressionism.
Three documentaries have previously been announced for NZIFF 2017: My Year With Helen from director Gaylene Preston, Florian Habicht’s Spookers, and Annie Goldson’s Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web.
NZ films at NZIFF are proudly supported by Resene. NZIFF is run by a charitable trust and encourages lively interactions between films, filmmakers and New Zealand audiences in 13 towns and cities around the country.
The full NZIFF programme will be available online from Monday 26 June 7pm, and on the streets from Tuesday 27 June for Auckland and Friday 30 June for Wellington. NZIFF starts in Auckland on 20 July and in Wellington from 28 July in 2017.