News of New Zealanders via Global Media

iZombie Renewed for Second Season on the CW

iZombie Renewed for Second Season on the CW

DC Comics/Vertigo-based series iZombie has been renewed by the CW for a second season. “Scheduling and an episode count have yet to be determined”, according to an article in The Hollywood Reporter. iZombie stars…

Keisha Castle-Hughes Makes Memorable Debut on Game of Thrones

Keisha Castle-Hughes Makes Memorable Debut on Game of Thrones

New Zealand actress Keisha Castle-Hughes “made a memorable debut on Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones – The Sons of the Harpy, according to the New York Times blog ArtsBeat. Castle-Hughes’ character Obara Sand and…

Heath Cozens Grapples with Controversial Sport

Heath Cozens Grapples with Controversial Sport

New Zealand-born filmmaker Heath Cozens, 41, saw his first Japanese disabled pro wrestling match in 2010. At the time, he didn’t know what to think. Cozens, who spent 18 years in Japan as a video…

Peter Jackson Celebrates Life of Friend Andrew Lesnie

Peter Jackson Celebrates Life of Friend Andrew Lesnie

Peter Jackson has taken to Facebook to celebrate the life of Andrew Lesnie – his friend, ‘brother’ and frequent collaborator, who suffered a fatal heart attack this week. “I grew up wondering what…

Russell Crowe’s Water Diviner a Story Only He Could Tell

Russell Crowe’s Water Diviner a Story Only He Could Tell

Growing up a New Zealander-Australian, Russell Crowe, 51, was intimately familiar with the Dardanelles Campaign, a veritable slaughterhouse battle over a tiny Turkish peninsula also known as Gallipoli. In his latest film, The Water…

Sundance TV Launches The Red Road Prequel Graphic Novel

Sundance TV Launches The Red Road Prequel Graphic Novel

Sundance TV’s acclaimed drama The Red Road, starring New Zealander Martin Henderson “has gotten off to quite the intense start” in its newly released second season according to tvovermind.com. In season two “Harold…

WETA Digital Helped to Complete Paul Walker’s Scenes for ‘Fast & Furious 7’

WETA Digital Helped to Complete Paul Walker’s Scenes for ‘Fast & Furious 7’

WETA Digital has helped to finish current box office hit Fast and Furious 7 after movie star Paul Walker passed away in a car accident halfway through the filming. Walker’s accident left the directors with…

Keisha Castle-Hughes Starring in Game of Thrones Season Five

Keisha Castle-Hughes Starring in Game of Thrones Season Five

  New Zealand actress Keisha Castle-Hughes has joined the Game of Thrones cast in the series’ fifth season, which has just kicked off in the US and New Zealand. Castle-Hughes is starring as Obara Sand, one…

Shushila Takao Stars in Cook Island-Set Thriller Tatau

Shushila Takao Stars in Cook Island-Set Thriller Tatau

Like many of the cast of BBC3’s new supernatural thriller Tatau, Shushila Takao is a New Zealander. She stars alongside British newcomers Joe Layton and Theo Barklem-Biggs as Aumea in the television…

Heath Cozens’ Film on Japanese Disabled Wrestlers Premieres

Heath Cozens’ Film on Japanese Disabled Wrestlers Premieres

A documentary about a small troupe of Tokyo wrestlers with disabilities made by New Zealander Heath Cozens will premiere at the Hot Docs Film Festival in Toronto on 27 April. Five years in the making,…

Jemaine Clement Joins Steven Spielberg’s The BFG

Jemaine Clement Joins Steven Spielberg’s The BFG

Jemaine Clement is set to star in Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The BFG alongside Penelope Wilton and Rebecca Hall. “In more than 40 years of making movies, I have been on the producing…

Director Andrew Niccol Shines a Light on Drone Warfare

Director Andrew Niccol Shines a Light on Drone Warfare

Nobody wanted to back a film on the subject of drone warfare, according to New Zealand-born director Andrew Niccol, whose drama Good Kill, about that very subject, is on now in UK cinemas. “We had…

Anna Paquin Developing Miniseries with Husband and Jack Black

Anna Paquin Developing Miniseries with Husband and Jack Black

True Blood star New Zealander Anna Paquin, 32, is set to return to HBO as Madame X in a new miniseries she is developing with husband Stephen Moyer and Jack Black. TheWrap reports…

Lucy Lawless Brings a Defiant Edge to Salem

Lucy Lawless Brings a Defiant Edge to Salem

Television channel WGN America has upped the ante by recruiting New Zealander Lucy Lawless, “one of television’s most cult-inspiring actresses”, to join the cast of witchy tale Salem. The season premiere introduces a character played…

Dwayne Johnson Joins Disney’s Polynesian tale ‘Moana’

Dwayne Johnson Joins Disney’s Polynesian tale ‘Moana’

Hollywood star Dwayne Johnson has officially signed on with Disney to play the male lead in their newest film Moana. The actor will lend his voice to Maui, the lead male protagonist in the upcoming…

In iZombie Rose McIver Devours Her Brainiest Role yet

In iZombie Rose McIver Devours Her Brainiest Role yet

New Zealander Rose McIver, 26, looks awfully alive for someone playing undead, New York Times correspondent Kathryn Shattuck writes. “In iZombie, her new series, she’s a vision of iron deficiency – ghostly pallor,…

First Fear the Walking Dead Trailer Released

First Fear the Walking Dead Trailer Released

AMC has released the first trailer for the upcoming Walking Dead spin-off series Fear the Walking Dead during the 90-minute fifth season finale “Conquer”. Starring New Zealand actor Cliff Curtis alongside Kim Dickens…

Ken Rea’s Students Include Daniel Craig and Ewan McGregor

Ken Rea’s Students Include Daniel Craig and Ewan McGregor

For 30 years, Rotorua-born Ken Rea has been a tutor in London at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, one of the oldest and most sought-after acting schools in the world. Rea’s students…

Frontier Comes To Life In New Zealand With Slow West

Frontier Comes To Life In New Zealand With Slow West

Slow West’ first trailer has been released – an indie western which was filmed in New Zealand, which doubled for the wilderness of Colorado, and which premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film…

New Zealand’s Deathgasm the Latest Shining Example of Horror Genre

New Zealand’s Deathgasm the Latest Shining Example of Horror Genre

New Zealand is once again making a name for itself in the horror genre with Deathgasm thanks to Kiwi producer Ant Timpson. “With a title like Deathgasm, filmmaker Jason Lei Howden could have…

Simone Kessell Fit to Be Queen in Biblical Epic

Simone Kessell Fit to Be Queen in Biblical Epic

Actor Simone Kessell is off to Capetown in April to play the first Queen of Egypt in biblical television epic Of Kings and Prophets. Of Kings and Prophets is the pilot for the US ABC…

Rose McIver in ‘iZombie’ thrills 2.3 million viewers

Rose McIver in ‘iZombie’ thrills 2.3 million viewers

The kiwi actress newest project iZombie had a solid debut on The CW Tuesday night, averaging 2.3 million viewers for its 9 p.m. series premiere. Rose Mc Iver stars in the DC Comics-inspired…

Kiwi Actor Cliff  Curtis to Star in The Walking Dead Spin-off Cobalt

Kiwi Actor Cliff Curtis to Star in The Walking Dead Spin-off Cobalt

Cliff Curtis will star as one of the main characters in The Walking Dead spin-off Cobalt, which will premiere on AMC in late summer. The New Zealand actor stars as Sean…

Kimberley Crossman Joins Fox ‘Fantasy Life’

Kimberley Crossman Joins Fox ‘Fantasy Life’

Kiwi actress Kimberley Crossman has landed a role in U.S. pilot ‘Fantasy Life’ on Fox, which is based on the memoir by one of U.S.’ top fantasy experts, ESPN’s Matthew Berry. When a hard-working guy,…

Melanie Lynskey Reflects on Realism in Latest Roles

Melanie Lynskey Reflects on Realism in Latest Roles

From Peter Jackson’s Heavenly Creatures to HBO’s new television show Togetherness, actor Melanie Lynskey reflects on what 20 years – and Charlie Sheen – have taught her about showbusiness. Jackson’s film introduced not only future…

Rose McIver in Rob Thomas’ ‘iZombie’

Rose McIver in Rob Thomas’ ‘iZombie’

Rob Thomas new series ‘iZombie’, starring Kiwi actress Rose McIver, will air in New Zealand on TVNZ on Demand from Thursday, March 19. The New Zealand native stars as Olivia (Liv), an over-achieving medical resident…

“What We Do in the Shadows” at the Top of the Pack

“What We Do in the Shadows” at the Top of the Pack

“What We Do In the Shadows” is so good, it wouldn’t be so creepy to have these lads rise from the crypt for a sequel”, proclaims Peter Howell, from The Record.com. Even…

Lucy Lawless Joins ‘Ash Vs. Evil Dead’

Lucy Lawless Joins ‘Ash Vs. Evil Dead’

Lucy Lawless will reunite with her “Xena: Warrior Princess” co-star Bruce Campbell on Starz’s “Ash Vs. Evil Dead”, which begins filming in Lawless’ native New Zealand in April. She will play Ruby, a…

Take a German Folk Music Tour with Hayden Chisholm

Take a German Folk Music Tour with Hayden Chisholm

Hayden Chisolm’s documentary, Sound of Heimat, which follows the New Zealand-born musician as he traverses Germany exploring the country’s folk music, screened in Rwanda at a recent film, photography and dance festival organised by…

Niki Caro’s Latest Feature Hits the Ground Running

Niki Caro’s Latest Feature Hits the Ground Running

New Zealander Niki Caro is the director of McFarland, USA, a Disney film based on the true story of a 1987 cross country team from a predominantly Mexican-American high school starring Kevin Costner. McFarland,…

New Zealand Shines As Bright As A Movie Star

New Zealand Shines As Bright As A Movie Star

“New Zealand might be best known for its breathtaking scenery, excellent wines and friendly locals; however, the land of the long white cloud has also earned a stellar reputation as a popular film location”…

New Zealander James Lucas Wins Oscar for Short Film

New Zealander James Lucas Wins Oscar for Short Film

Christchurch-raised James Lucas has won an Oscar in the category Best Live Action Short Film, for his “moving” and “well-deserved” The Phone Call, a star-studded film he co-wrote with friend, Briton Mat Kirkby. “Previous nominee…

Antidote To Mythical Bloodsucking

Antidote To Mythical Bloodsucking

Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi’s What We Do in the Shadows, in which vampires mix with a mockumentary crew, is rapturously reviewed by the Wall St Journal’s Joe Morgenstern. The film, writes Morgenstern, is “a…

How Jemaine Clement Became 862-year-old Vladislav

How Jemaine Clement Became 862-year-old Vladislav

Being a vampire wasn’t entirely new to Jemaine Clement, co-director and star of What We Do In The Shadows. His first credited role was playing one in a 1995 horror short film called Blood…

Hobbit Trilogy Unmitigated Financial Grand-Slam for All Parties

Hobbit Trilogy Unmitigated Financial Grand-Slam for All Parties

“The Hobbit trilogy has been incredibly successful on a domestic and worldwide stage,” Forbes contributor Scott Mendelson writes. “The three-film trilogy cost around US$765m to produce and made US$2.916b worldwide thus far. Yet no…

New Line Cinema to Remake New Zealand Horror-Comedy ‘Housebound’

New Line Cinema to Remake New Zealand Horror-Comedy ‘Housebound’

New Line Cinema has picked up the remake rights of New Zealand horror-comedy Housebound, which earned praise from Lord of the Rings filmmaker Peter Jackson. Gerard Johnstone, who wrote and directed the movie, will produce the remake but…

‘Theory Of Everything’s Anthony McCarten & Working Title Set Winston Churchill WWII Epic

‘Theory Of Everything’s Anthony McCarten & Working Title Set Winston Churchill WWII Epic

After The Theory Of Everything garnered five Oscar nominations including Best Picture, writer-producer Anthony McCarten has signed a deal to work alongside producer Lisa Bruce and Working Title partners Eric Fellner and Tim Bevan…

Damaged Christchurch Mirrors Relationship in New Film

Damaged Christchurch Mirrors Relationship in New Film

The feature-length Sunday, which has its Australian premiere at the 9th Byron Bay Film Festival, is set in Christchurch a year after the 2011 earthquake, where scenes of damage, poignancy and hope provide a…

Danielle Cormack’s Toughest Role Yet

Danielle Cormack’s Toughest Role Yet

Auckland-born actor Logie-nominated Danielle Cormack, 44, came to the attention of Australian audiences playing a feisty and imperious solicitor in the ABC drama Rake. The character that followed in Underbelly: Razor was no shrinking…

Stephen Hunter’s On-screen Transformations Continue

Stephen Hunter’s On-screen Transformations Continue

You might not recognise New Zealand actor Stephen Hunter, 46, from one of his biggest film roles without a bushy red beard, a huge, ring-shaped plait of red hair and a lot of bulky…

Jemaine Clement Stars as Israeli Fixer Opposite Sam Rockwell

Jemaine Clement Stars as Israeli Fixer Opposite Sam Rockwell

The Utah filmmakers who begat Napoleon Dynamite made a triumphant return to the Sundance Film Festival with New Zealand actor Jemaine Clement playing opposite American funnyman Sam Rockwell in Don Verdean, a movie about…

Sundance Comedy Immeasurably Funnier with Jemaine Clement

Sundance Comedy Immeasurably Funnier with Jemaine Clement

Jemaine Clement plays the lead role in indie romantic comedy People, Places, Things as penny-pinched New York graphic novelist Will Henry who is struggling upstream with life and the numerous females in his orbit,…

Bloody Good Film: A Biting New Zealand Comedy Takes America

Bloody Good Film: A Biting New Zealand Comedy Takes America

Film Comment, the magazine of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, has its January/February cover boy a blood-drenched Jemaine Clement from What We Do in the Shadows. Co-written, co-directed and co-starring Clement…

Peter the Great’s Hobbit Premieres in China

Peter the Great’s Hobbit Premieres in China

Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson was joined by Weta Workshop’s Richard Taylor (pictured far left) in Beijing for the Chinese premiere of the final Hobbit installment on 19 January. This was Jackson’s final stop on his…

Jane Campion’s Sweetie a Beautifully Strange Debut

Jane Campion’s Sweetie a Beautifully Strange Debut

Writer-director Jane Campion’s “mysterious visual style was showcased” in her 1989 film debut Sweetie, a “left field story about the love-hate relationship between two sisters,” the Guardian’s Luke Buckmaster writes. “Campion has made a career…

Oscar Nominations for Screenwriter Anthony McCarten

Oscar Nominations for Screenwriter Anthony McCarten

Among the five Oscar nominations announced for the Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory Of Everything came a nod for New Plymouth-born producer and screenwriter Anthony McCarten. McCarten has been nominated twice as co-producer and…

Dutch Film Industry Appoints Marten Rabarts

Dutch Film Industry Appoints Marten Rabarts

New Zealand-born Marten Rabarts, currently head of development and training at the National Film Development Corporation in India, has been appointed head of EYE International (formerly Holland Film) and will take up…

Melanie Lysnkey’s Togetherness Performance a Stand-Out

Melanie Lysnkey’s Togetherness Performance a Stand-Out

It’s hard to pinpoint what is brilliant about new comedy series Togetherness, but a good place to start is its casting of Melanie Lynskey, according to Salon television critic Sonia Saraiya. “Lynskey is a New…

Peter Jackson Wants Off Hollywood Blockbuster Bandwagon

Peter Jackson Wants Off Hollywood Blockbuster Bandwagon

The new Hobbit film made US$90 million in its opening weekend, but in an interview with Esquire magazine director Peter Jackson confesses he doesn’t really like the “Hollywood blockbuster bandwagon.” The third and final installment…

Erebus – Into the Unknown

Erebus – Into the Unknown

History has always proved a success topic for film, acting as a means of celebration of those lost and those who have made a difference. The new documentary-film Erebus: Into the Unknown does both…

Marton Csokas Employs Brutal Tactics in New Miniseries

Marton Csokas Employs Brutal Tactics in New Miniseries

New Zealand actor Marton Csokas plays General Thomas Gage in the History Channel miniseries Sons of Liberty, which premieres on 25 January. Sons of Liberty, a three-part, six-hour series, which was filmed in Romania, tells…

Brazilian Filmmaker David Schurmann Heads Back to NZ

Brazilian Filmmaker David Schurmann Heads Back to NZ

New Zealand Film and Television School graduate, Brazilian film director David Schurmann, is shooting Little Secret, inspired by the life of his adopted sister Kat Schurmann, and written by Marcos Bernstein, scribe of Walter…

The Hobbit: “Peerless Fantasy, Flawlessly Rendered”

The Hobbit: “Peerless Fantasy, Flawlessly Rendered”

“The pleasure is intense, and mixed with awe,” writes Wall Street Journal film critic Joe Morgenstern of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. “There is majesty here, and not just because we’re…

Melanie Lynskey the Voice of an Irascible Cartoon Bluebird

Melanie Lynskey the Voice of an Irascible Cartoon Bluebird

New Zealand-born actress Melanie Lynskey, who starred alongside Charlie Sheen in television comedy Two and a Half Men, is the voice of bluebird Beatrice in the “beautiful” Cartoon Network 10-part miniseries Over the Garden…

Empire Reunites Peter Jackson and the Bad Taste Gang

Empire Reunites Peter Jackson and the Bad Taste Gang

For the January issue of Empire, devoted entirely to bidding “Farewell to Middle-earth,” Peter Jackson and the crew of the 1987 splatter classic, Bad Taste are reunited “to reminiscence about the crazy shoot.” “That year,…

Portrayal of Genesis Earns Cliff Curtis Best Actor Accolades

Portrayal of Genesis Earns Cliff Curtis Best Actor Accolades

Cliff Curtis has won best actor at the Asia Pacific Screen Awards for his portrayal of Genesis Potini in The Dark Horse, ahead of veteran Australian actor David Gulpilil, who won the prize…