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Massey graduate turned film director Peter Young's feature documentary The Last Ocean will screen at the New Zealand International Film Festival in Palmerston North this weekend.
The film focuses on commercial fishing in Antarctica's Ross Sea and tells the story of the race to protect Earth's last untouched ocean.
Mr Young, one of New Zealand's leading nature cameramen, was born and raised in Hawera, spent a decade mustering, shearing and fencing on farms throughout New Zealand, and completed a Diploma of Agriculture at Massey University (graduated 1983) before travelling overseas.
He first picked up a camera while working on a commercial fishing boat in Alaska and discovered an affinity for filmmaking. On returning to New Zealand he completed a Bachelor of Broadcasting Communications at the Christchurch Polytechnic and, in 1989 was employed as a writer/director at Television New Zealand's Natural History Unit in Dunedin.
He moved to camera, shooting news and current affairs for four years before establishing his own company, Fisheye Films, in Christchurch in 1997. He has won multiple awards for production and camera work. As a freelance director and cameraman he has credits in more than 100 documentaries, among them the BBC’s Blue Planet series and a documentary on giant squid for the Discovery channel.
He also filmed many of the South Island Country Calendar episodes, the acclaimed TVNZ series Explorers and the final tribute documentary for Sir Edmund Hilary. Recently he produced and shot the award winning series Hunger for the Wild and is now working on a new series for TVNZ, called Coasters.
The Last Ocean project began six years ago and became a labour of love that expanded into the formation of a charitable trust to promote the protection of the Ross Sea, where there was no commercial fishing before New Zealand initiated it in 1986.
The 87-minute film premiered at the New Zealand International Film Festival in Auckland on August 1 and is now touring New Zealand.
The Palmerston North screenings are at Downtown Cinema on Friday at 3.45pm and Sunday at 1.45pm. The film will screen again in Auckland and Wellington on general release from next week.
More information may be found here: www.lastocean.co.nz and the trailer for the documentary viewed here: