Door opens to careers in film industry

Door opens to careers in film industry


Northland College students William Hohepa (17), Caylynn (16) and Qianna Titore (15), and Francesca Blaikie (17), from Okaihau College, have been granted mentorships to develop short films this year, after a weekend Script to Screen workshop in South Hokianga.

The workshop, designed around developing story ideas for the screen, was open to everyone with an interest in film and story-telling, with a special focus on rangatahi, and attracted a mix of adults and young people aged 15-25, along with their teachers.

They spent the first day with screen-writer Michael Bennett at Rawene’s Northtec Campus, learning about the fundamentals of screenwriting and finding the heart of their story, having been encouraged to arrive with a film idea that they could work on. An overnight stay at Waima’s Tuhirangi Marae allowed the group to develop a sense of community around a shared interest in film-making, and Script to Screen showed a selection of short films.

The second day gave the participants the chance to take a personal or a fictional story and learn how to structure it in a way that would captivate an audience. Every film idea pitch received feedback and advice from the panel, including Michael Bennett, local film-maker Susy Pointon and workshop organiser Eloise Veber.

A key outcome of the workshop was to give four of the young participants a mentorship to progress their film project.

“The judges were blown away by the strength of the film ideas pitched, which told moving personal stories and captured moments of local history, including the banning of te reo Maori in schools and the Dog Tax Wars of 1989,” Eloise said.

And Script to Screen had been thrilled to offer mentorships to four promising film-makers, who would now work with industry mentors to develop and make their films this year.

Lahni Sowter, of Tuhirangi Marae, said she had been energised by seeing the young people develop their story ideas.

“We are natural orators here in the North, and I believe that the medium of film-making and visual story-telling will play a vital role in preserving our culture and history, enabling us to keep our korero, our stories and our reo alive for future generations,” she said.

– Northland Age

Comments are closed.