Waitakere Mayor championing New Zealand film in China

Thursday 3 June 2010, 4:14PM
By Waitakere City Council


Waitakere Mayor Bob Harvey is leaving on Saturday to lead a delegation to the fifth New Zealand Film Festival in China. The New Zealand film industry supported delegation is aimed at fostering NZ/China co-produced films and championing further opportunities.

The 2010 New Zealand Film Festival has screenings in Beijing and Hangzhou, and includes five features: Boy, The Vintner’s Luck, Home by Christmas, After the Waterfall and I am not Harry Jenson. Short films include Six Dollar Fifty Man, Poppy, Aphrodite's Farm, Take 3 and Vostock Station.

“New Zealand has provided epic stories and great film crews, stars and directors that have helped to turn the world’s eyes towards us as a film-making destination,” Mayor Harvey says.

“I am honoured to be leading a delegation that includes so many successful innovators from the New Zealand film industry.”

“The festival is an opportunity for Chinese people to increase their knowledge and experience of New Zealand cinema, culture and society – an important factor in bringing Chinese and Kiwi film makers together.”

The festival will encourage international cooperation among filmmakers in both film production and post-production.

It follows a 2005 agreement between the New Zealand Ministry of Culture and Heritage and China’s State Administration of Radio, Film and TV to encourage bilateral radio, film and television cooperation.

Delegates are looking to complete a bilateral film co-production treaty, which is in an advanced stage of development.

Film Auckland will then sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the China Film Association that outlines areas and processes of continued cooperation.

Delegation Deputy Leader and Film Auckland Board Member Peter Rive says Mayor Harvey’s legacy of fostering film in Waitakere and New Zealand will be vital to those deals.

“Film Auckland is most appreciative of the support of Mayor Bob Harvey and Waitakere City for leading our screen delegation to China. The seniority and mana that his presence brings greatly assists our efforts in concluding co-production deals with China.”

The 5th New Zealand Film Festival in the People’s Republic of China will be held from 6 June to 8 July and is presented by the China Film Bureau and the New Zealand Film Commission. The festival is coordinated by the Pacific Culture and Arts Exchange Centre.

Notes for editors

Mayor Bob Harvey spearheaded a Waitakere City Council bid to buy the Apple and Pear Board sheds on Henderson Valley Road in 2002.

Those sheds became the backbone of a more than $100 million film industry in Waitakere.

They were developed into Henderson Valley Film Studios with the aim of competing on the international TV and movie market.

Top films including The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, In My Fathers Den, Boogeymen and 30 Days Of Night have been produced there.

Disney signed a long term production contract with the studio. A multi-million dollar sound studio extension was completed in 2007 with the support of Central Government.