News of New Zealanders via Global Media

Ringing up the gold

Ringing up the gold

Lord of the Rings has brought the gold into Wellington, the city of “tearooms and sea views”. View the New Zealand setting in the round at the official site.

NZ film in NY

NZ film in NY

“2001: A New Zealand Film Odyssey” currently running in  New York festures “new, rediscovered and undiscovered” New Zealand films, including hot-now The Price of Milk and classics Utu and War Stories Our Mothers Never Told…

Greenstone Hit

Greenstone Hit

New Zealand historical drama Greenstone infiltrates Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples Television Network.

Maclean, you’ve done it again

Maclean, you’ve done it again

Alison Maclean’s Jesus’ Son: “scruffy, loopy and terrifc” on video.

Trailer Lords

Trailer Lords

“There’s an advert currently going out on Virgin radio encouraging listeners to go to the cinema this Friday. It does urge you go to a film but only because this is the first opportunity…

First Baggins off the rack

First Baggins off the rack

“The most ambitious undertaking in the film world recently has been Peter Jackson’s filming of the Lord of the Rings trilogy in New Zealand. If the results are as epic as the production, the first…

More Cate

More Cate

“I’m so excited to be doing all three movies,” says Blanchett. “It’s thrilling. I wanted this project so badly. We’re talking Peter Jackson. And Tolkien – my God! That man, Tolkien, created a whole…

Change your life

Change your life

Get prepared for Rings-mania: Brush up on your Tolkien makes number 16 on the list of 99 ways to change your life.

Rings v Potter

Rings v Potter

“If the budget on Lord of the Rings is sky-high, so are expectations surrounding the films. Fans of Tolkien’s 1,000-page trilogy about hobbits and elves in the fantasy land called Middle Earth are truly…

Going Vertical

Going Vertical

Kiwi filmed/helmed Vertical Limit gave star Chris O’Donnell a few moments of terror: “my next thought was, somebody better show me a copy of my paycheck again, so I can remember why I’m doing this…

Dishy Neill

Dishy Neill

Sam Neill puts in a “terrific performance” in The Dish, a “little-known story of how an obscure Australian tracking station provided the crucial downlink for the worldwide broadcast of the 1969 moon walk”, which has…

In the Pink of Elf

In the Pink of Elf

“Cate Blanchett is looking particularly ethereal…perhaps it’s just a little leftover glow from the four months spent in New Zealand playing the Lady Galadriel…”

Vertical #2

Vertical #2

“Vertical Limit has its flaws – but they’re not enough to dim rousing, old-fashioned escapism which uses modern techno-skills to really put you in the picture and on the mountain peak.”

Escape from Middle Earth

Escape from Middle Earth

With a $100 000 budget and all the glamour Wellington could muster, the Rings wrap party was like “something straight out of Tolkien”.

Year of the Crowe

Year of the Crowe

What sparked Crowe-mania? “I don’t know mate. Luck?” suggests the man himself, Entertainment Weekly‘s entertainer of the year. Proof of Life co-star David Caruso disagrees: “Once in a generation an actor will come along and…

Manly, subtle Crowe

Manly, subtle Crowe

“We already knew from The Insider that Crowe was a fine, subtle, vanity-free actor, happy to ruin his looks to play pudgy and useless. But Gladiator and Proof of Life prove that he’s also a great movie…

Romper Stomper

Romper Stomper

Crowe’s “breakthrough film” released on DVD: “Crowe is electrifying as the brutal head of a group of neo-Nazi skinheads who harass the Vietnamese community in contemporary Melbourne”.

Amazon Crowe

Amazon Crowe

The “Delight-O-Meter” puts Gladiator at the top on Amazon.com.

Finding Forrester

Finding Forrester

“I knew that if Gus Van Sant was wanting to make the movie, then it definitely meant there was something special about it,” says Anna Paquin. She plays opposite co-Oscarites Sean Connery and F….

Neill at home

Neill at home

“It’s good to get back to New Zealand and Australia to make a film because I feel more at home in that part of the world,” says Sam Neill, now on screen in Aussie…

Vertical Exhilaration

Vertical Exhilaration

NZ-filmed and directed Vertical Limit goes public. The scenery scores universal acclaim: Ottawa Citizen, Chicago Sun-Times, USA Today, ctnow, entertainmentnewsdaily, National Post, Chicago Tribune, the Star, Washington Post. Scott Glen battled Mt Cook, the…

Moko on Film

Moko on Film

Jillian White’s Moko, a short documentary featuring the first contemporary man to wear moko, included in Sundance 2001. Felicity Morgan-Rhind’s short Donuts for Breakfast, is also on the programme.

Proof of Life

Proof of Life

The plot goes wobbly, but Russell Crowe is the man. Crowe is “a powerful screen presence, the sort of fellow every man wants to befriend and every woman wants to love”: “the movie comes…

Proof of quality

Proof of quality

Oscar noms tipped for Crowe’s Proof of Life turn as kidnap and ransom rescue specialist Terry Thorne.

Fantastically weird

Fantastically weird

“The Price of Milk is a fantastically weird and funny little film. Boasting the sort of edgy, quirky slant usually only maintained in short film, it never compromises its oddness which is a joy.”

Price of Milk

Price of Milk

“So this film is my dream about New Zealand, this make-believe country that seems almost empty of people” – director Harry Sinclair on his dairy-tale romance, The Price of Milk.

Shifty Crowe

Shifty Crowe

New DVD’s reveal Crowe’s dark, pre-Gladiator side: “With his shifty eyes, stocky frame and ready fist, he was born to be the heavy. His roles have included portrayals of a neo-Nazi skinhead (Romper Stomper),…

Punitive Damage

Punitive Damage

New Zealander Helen Todd’s documentary inditing the Indonesian military for the Dili massacre screens at the Las Vegas CineVegas festival.

O’Donnell’s limit

O’Donnell’s limit

“As star of the (Kiwi-directed) mountain-climbing epic Vertical Limit Chris O’Donnell had been helicoptered to the edge of a jagged rock formation in New Zealand’s rugged Southern Alps and deposited to “hang out” for…

Location location

Location location

New Zealand is hot property, drawing location scouts who scour the planet looking for the perfect waterfall or mountain stream.

Counting Crowe

Counting Crowe

Amazon keeps count of DVD pre-orders. Gladiator gores Perfect Storm 80 000 to 30 0000 . Also due out on DVD is Crowe’s “breakthrough performance” in Romper Stomper.

Location #2

Location #2

“As globalisation impacts mainstream Indian cinema, one of the early fall-outs is a flight of locations, with Indian film-makers snapping up every excuse in the book to shoot everywhere – from Alaska to New…

Xena kills jiggle TV

Xena kills jiggle TV

“Is it the end of the Baywatch phenomenon? In place of the silicon- enhanced charms of David Hasselhof’s babes is the well-toned New Zealander who yells yi-yi-yi-yi when vanquishing an opponent, leaps through the…

Hrithik era

Hrithik era

Indian tourists are awarding New Zealand an Oscar. Visitor numbers have shot up on the back of a high-profile film starring mega-hunk Hrithik Roshan and New Zealand as the backdrop.

Whitewash

Whitewash

Maori cut from crowd scenes in Her Majesty, US-funded feature film set in New Zealand c.1953-54. Producer Walter Coblenz (All the President’s Men), said historical accuracy motivated the cutting.

It’s a Wrap

It’s a Wrap

Lord of the Rings is due to wrap three days before Christmas, right on schedule. Director Peter Jackson notes the authenticity index has climbed during filming: “way back at the beginning we thought there…

PC Lost World

PC Lost World

New Zealand will host BBC’s dinosaur/sci-fi classic The Lost World. Offensive passages, referring to “sub-humans noted for their savage behaviour and low intellects” will be removed, cutting down the number of politicians moonlighting as…

Vertical limit

Vertical limit

The stunning slopes of Aoraki (Mt Cook)  backdrop Kiwi Martin Campbell’s ice action thriller, Vertical Limit. Starring Chris O’Donnel and Nicholas Lea, Vertical Limit is scheduled for 15 December release.

Shorts and sweet

Shorts and sweet

Four NZ films feature in NY’s Shorts International Film Festival, including Felicity Morgan-Rhind’s Donuts for Breakfast. Top shorts will be considered for Oscar noms.

Sam Neill is in LA filming Jurassic 3

Sam Neill is in LA filming Jurassic 3

The grounds of his temporary residence are described as “park-like”…

Join the army and let the world see you!

Join the army and let the world see you!

New Zealand defence personnel will feature on big screens around the globe – as extras in Lord of the Rings. The soldiers were perfect when the filmmakers needed “big numbers of people who were…

Three Foot Six and still growing

Three Foot Six and still growing

Vanity Fair estimates the cost of Lord of the Rings at NZ$623 million. If correct, Wellington company Three Foot Six is producing the second-most expensive movie ever.

Top Class

Top Class

Chopper, New Zealand-born director Andrew Dominik’s acclaimed bio-pic of the maniacal murderer, has received Australian Film Institute noms for Best Film and Best Direction, plus eight other nominations including Best Screenplay (penned by Dominik).

Devils’ Playground

Devils’ Playground

“If they were human they would be regarded as severely dysfunctional.” New Zealander Rod Morris on Tasmanian Devils, the stars of The Devil’s Playground, which has won him a Wildscreen Panda – wildlife film’s…

Guy Pearce’s Kiwi Dad

Guy Pearce’s Kiwi Dad

Yes, Guy is an Australian (he spent fours years on Neighbours to prove it), but his father was a New Zealander who tested planes for the Royal Air Force. Pearce, also Russell Crowe’s side-kick…

Truman to Simone

Truman to Simone

Oscar-nominated Andrew Niccol (Gattaca, The Truman Show) has scripted and will helm Simone. Al Pacino stars alongside a mysterious actress who may or may not be real.

Tamahori: Edge iconoclast

Tamahori: Edge iconoclast

The Boston Globe profiles the Boston Film/Video Foundation, mentioning Kiwi Lee Tamahori, along with Rose Troche (Go Fish) and Whit Stillman (Barcelona) as an “international iconoclast” from their “Meet the Director” series.

Virtual Hobbits

Virtual Hobbits

“In a nondescript suburb of New Zealand’s capital, the team at Weta Digital, an offshoot of Peter Jackson’s Wingnut Films, is producing more than 1,200 visual effect shots for the three Lord of…

Rena Owen on jury at Montreal Film Festival

Rena Owen on jury at Montreal Film Festival

Feisty Kiwi actress Rena Owen (Once Were Warriors, What Becomes of the Broken-Hearted), sat on the jury of the of the Montreal Film Festival. The jury awarded the festival’s major award, the…

The Piano plays on

The Piano plays on

Holly Hunter, who played a mute Scottish widow in Jane Campion’s The Piano (1993), muses on the unexpected success of the movies. “It was a $5 million movie in New Zealand, and it ended…

The purloined piano?

The purloined piano?

The Piano secured Jane Campion as a major director and catapulted her from the art-house to the multiplex, but the Oxford Companion to Australian Film recently cast doubt over the originality of the screenplay for…

Flaming Fox

Flaming Fox

“It’s difficult to pin down Kerry Fox. For every film-goer who knows her as the murderous medical student in Shallow Grave, there’s another who remembers her as the dumpy author Janet Frame in An Angel…

Edge Factor

Edge Factor

Canadian-born, New Zealand-raised Anna Paquin is studying English literature of Columbia University and starring in two hot movies  X-Men and Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous. Winning the Oscar was “pretty much the flukiest cool…

Still Crowe-ing

Still Crowe-ing

Does Bill Bryson bring Russell Crowe to mind? For some book reviewers, anything south of the equator can be connected with the Edge’s hunkiest export.

Sssshhh! Silence is Regulated Golden

Sssshhh! Silence is Regulated Golden

A multiplex in Birmingham banning kissing in its cinemas prompted the BBC to investigate cinema etiquette leading them to uncover the news that an independent cinema in Wellington, New Zealand, banned crisps from its…

Crowe Songs Attract Flock of Acolytes

Crowe Songs Attract Flock of Acolytes

Crowds packed, paid up to $300 and queued for up to 12 hours to get into Stubb’s Bar-B-Q in Austin, Texas, for a performance by an unknown country-rock band called Thirty Odd Foot of…