At the NZFC session at SPADA yesterday (Thursday), the Commission and the Regional Film Offices of New Zealand (RFONZ), the organisation representing regional film office members, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) committing to positive collaboration – something that wasn’t always the norm between the now-absorbed Film NZ and regional film offices.
The new agreement targets a client-focused service for international screen sector clients, as well as efficiencies for joint activity. The general principle agreed is that the good of the industry is the primary consideration, with the good of an individual region and organisation coming second.
Parties are also committed to grow and sustain the industry – and are no doubt feeding into the discussions with Minister Lees-Galloway around the Hobbit Law, which PM Jacinda Ardern referenced in her opening address to conference.
The NZFC now operates the marketing and promoting of NZ as a screen production destination, as well as having a more active attraction role supported by the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Enterprise (MBIE).
RFONZ is the umbrella organisation for individual regional film offices, some of whom have done good work in building relationships and establishing protocols with national bodies like DoC around use of conservation land for filming.
Areas for collaboration outlined in the MOU between NZFC and RFONZ include combined activities offshore and onshore (eg markets, tradeshows, offshore delegations and inbound recces), image database usage protocol, training, and economic initiatives, such as infrastructure development. The new processes will help co-ordinate and streamline responses for international enquiries considering activity in more than one region, which should deliver more consistent responses with less duplication for clients.
The MOU will be reviewed and updated annually. Signatories were soon-departing NZFC CEO Dave Gibson, NZFC Head of Attractions Philippa Mossman, and RFONZ Chair Michael Brook.