Sunday, 22 July 2018

NZIFF Q&A - East to East

NZIFF Q&A - East to East


My film is.... 
A story about a group of teenagers from Aranui High School, in East Christchurch, New Zealand, who are offered the opportunity to compete in the iconic Coast To Coast multisport race in tandem with three legends of the sport. Together with Steve Gurney, Nathan Fa'avae and Emily Miazga, they enter a world very different to their own.
Themes:
Overcoming adversity
Smashing boundaries, both mental and physical
Opening and inspiring minds
NZIFF Q&A - East to East

The moment I'm most proud of is.... 
Right now!   – I’m so proud to have this wee film selected for NZIFF.  I’m so delighted that we can share this story with a wider audience!

The reason I carried on with this film when it got tough is..... 
Because of the students themselves … if they can finish that race – I can finish this film!  There’s a moment at the end when Steve Gurney says “I get really emotional thinking that you can make a difference to someone”, and I think this sums it up.  In my mind the film was part of the journey for these students too.  It’s something they can see and feel, to help hold onto that feeling of accomplishment.  When things were tough, it was easy to be inspired by the students on the screen themselves.

The one moment that will resonate with an audience is....... 
When Taitama decides to pull out.  We’ve all been in a situation where it becomes too hard and we want to give up, and I think it is a moment that people will connect with and understand.  There’s also a point later in the film when we learn a bit more about Taitama’s history, and this helps to fill in the story and it’s very moving.

The hardest thing I had to cut from this film is........ 
There were some hilarious moments at McDonalds restaurant the day after the race.  Dan De Bont had rashly said he would shout them as much Maccers as they could eat, after the race.  And he did!  I took a camera but it didn’t make it to the final cut

The thing I want people to take from this film is ...... 
That you can achieve more than you think you can.
Rawiri Waaka (the students teacher) sums it up nicely when he talks about life being hard but it’s what you “do” that counts.   I hope people are inspired to get out there and make a difference – either in their community or in themselves!

The reason I love the NZIFF is....... 
They love film!  They celebrate it and shout about it!  Their programme is varied and there is always something for everyone.  Their support of local filmmakers is wonderful, and yet they manage to balance it with a fantastic selection of the top international films too.  I love being able to see shorts and features, docos and dramas in the one festival.
What the 50th NZIFF means to me is......
It’s a celebration of how much they have done over the last five decades, and a great way to look forward to the next 50 years!  What an honour to be a part of their history!

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