Big Screen Symposium

Heather Rae
Heather Rae Heather Rae (Cherokee) has produced over 10 feature films including Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner FROZEN RIVER (2008). Her latest film, Netflix Original TALLULAH stars Ellen Page and Allison Janney and is now available on the VOD platform. She is the former director of the Native Program at the Sundance Institute. [Read More]
Cliff Curtis
Cliff Curtis Respected actor Cliff Curtis has starred in NZ’s most celebrated films including THE PIANO, ONCE WERE WARRIORS, WHALE RIDER and THE DARK HORSE, whilst also carving a career in Hollywood. He has also produced films such as BOY and EAGLE VS SHARK with producer Ainsley Gardiner. He currently stars in AMC’s FEAR THE WALKING DEAD. [Read More]
Jonathan Raymond
Jonathan Raymond Jonathan Raymond is the author of the novels THE HALF-LIFE, RAIN DRAGON and forthcoming FREEBIRD. He is the co-writer of director Kelly Reichardt's OLD JOY (2006) and WENDY AND LUCY (2008), and wrote the screenplays for MEEK'S CUT-OFF (2010) and NIGHT MOVES (2013). He also co-wrote the HBO's 5 x Emmy award winning miniseries MILDRED PIERCE. [Read More]
Christopher Doyle
Christopher Doyle Christopher Doyle is one of the world’s most brilliant cinematographers, having created some of the most beautiful and innovative cinema imagery of all time. Among his 60 awards and 30 nominations is the Grand Technical Prize at Cannes for IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE, as well as the Osella d’Oro for Best Cinematography for ASHES OF TIME at Venice. [Read More]
Barrie M. Osborne
Barrie M. Osborne Barry M. Osborne has produced an awe inspiring body of films, notably THE LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy for which he won an Oscar for Best Picture. Osborne’s list of producer and executive producer credits include THE BIG CHILL, THE MATRIX, DICK TRACY, FACE/OFF, THE WATER HORSE, LITTLE FISH, GLORIA and PETE’S DRAGON. [Read More]
Cate Shortland
Cate Shortland Cate has 15 years of experience writing and directing for both film and television. Her feature films include SOMERSAULT which premiered at Cannes in 2004, LORE (2012) and yet-to-be-released THE BERLIN SYNDROME (2017). In television she is known as a screenwriter (THE KETTERING INCIDENT, THE SLAP) and a director (THE SECRET LIFE OF US, THE SILENCE). [Read More]
Joe Letteri
Joe Letteri Joe Letteri has won 4 Academy Awards and 4 BAFTAs for pioneering the motion capture techniques that have brought some of film’s most iconic characters to life, including the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park, Gollum, King Kong and the Na’vi in AVATAR. He has been leading Weta Digital as Visual Effects Supervisor since 2002. [Read More]
Opeyemi Olukemi
Opeyemi Olukemi A fierce advocate for cross-disciplinary collaboration and immersive storytelling, Opeyemi Olukemi is senior director of Interactive for Tribeca Film Institute, where she oversees the TFI New Media Fund and leads the Institute’s digital and interactive programs. Opeyemi is also Assistant Professor of Integrated Media at Brooklyn College and a 2016 Rockwood JustFilms Fellow. [Read More]
Tony Krawitz
Tony Krawitz Tony is an award-winning Australian director of film and television. In TV he is known for his work directing drama including THE KETTERING INCIDENT and THE DEVIL'S PLAYGROUND. He also directed the feature film DEAD EUROPE, and wrote and directed the short drama JEWBOY, which premiered at Cannes in 2005. [Read More]
Courtney Botfield
Courtney Botfield Courtney is director of The Goodship Agency, which provides socially conscious filmmakers with alternative ways of financing and distribution. Courtney has 20 years experience in development, production, and distribution in Australia and the UK, including working as General Manager of Transmission Films and marketing dozen of films including THE KING’S SPEECH and BOY. [Read More]
Pietra Brettkelly
Pietra Brettkelly Pietra is a multi award-winning documentary director/producer. Her documentaries include the critically acclaimed THE ART STAR AND THE SUDANESE TWINS and MAORI BOY GENIUS, as well as her recent film A FLICKERING TRUTH, which premiered in competition at both Venice & Toronto Film Festivals, and recently screened in NZ cinemas. [Read More]
Stallone Vaiaoga-Ioasa
Stallone Vaiaoga-Ioasa Stallone is a NZ-born Samoan freelance TV director and camera operator. He recently wrote and directed his first feature film, the self-funded and self-distributed samoan comedy THREE WISE COUSINS. The film exceeded all expectations after making NZ$1m and AUS$1m at the NZ and Australian box offices. It is currently screening theatrically in the US. [Read More]
Simon Price
Simon Price Simon is one of NZ's sought-after editors. He has over twenty years of experience editing award-winning shorts, feature films -including Tamasese's THE ORATOR, and television including ABC's indigenous supernatural drama series CLEVERMAN. He is also a founder of Sydney-based post house ArcEdit. [Read More]
Jackie Van Beek
Jackie Van Beek Jackie is a NZ actor/writer/director. After making seven shorts, she is now in post-production with her first feature, THE INLAND ROAD, and is preparing to shoot her second, THE BREAKER-UPPERERS, with co-writer/director/actor Madeleine Sami. As an actor she is best known for her roles in WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS and FUNNY GIRLS. [Read More]
Florian Habicht
Florian Habicht Florian is responsible for some of NZs most innovative films, from experimental WOODENHEAD (2003), to his participatory LOVE STORY (2010) and his most recent music documentary PULP: A FILM ABOUT LIFE, DEATH & SUPERMARKETS. Florian is currently in post-production with his latest feature film SPOOKERS, and has two other films in development. [Read More]
Lukasz Pawel Buda
Lukasz Pawel Buda Luke is part of the award-winning band, The Phoenix Foundation. He has also worked with his bandmate Samuel Flynn Scott on scores for various television shows and films, including HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE and BOY. Luke also wrote with Lawrence Arabia the song “Apple Pie Bed” which won an APRA Silver Scroll Award. [Read More]
Samuel Flynn Scott
Samuel Flynn Scott Sam is one of the main creative voices behind The Phoenix Foundation. He has also worked on producing and composing scores for films such as HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE and BOY with his bandmate Lukasz Pawel Buda. In 2004, he branched out and formed his solo band Bunnies on Ponies. [Read More]
Ainsley Gardiner
Ainsley Gardiner Ainsley is a writer, director and producer. Best known for producing Taika Waititi’s Oscar-nominated short film TWO CARS, ONE NIGHT and features EAGLE VS SHARK and BOY, Ainsley has also produced THE PĀ BOYS amongst a range of other films and television drama. Ainsley is currently a writer & director on collaborative feature film WARU. [Read More]
Briar Grace-Smith
Briar Grace-Smith Briar is an award-winning writer of scripts, screenplays and short stories. Her features include critically acclaimed STRENGTH OF WATER, and horror comedy FRESH MEAT. Recently she wrote for Māori TV drama THIS IS PIKI, and wrote and directed CHARM for the collaborative feature project WARU, which brings together the work of eight Māori women directors. [Read More]
Chelsea Winstanley
Chelsea Winstanley After several years of creating documentary content for Māori Television, Chelsea began producing drama, with two short films screening in competition at Cannes; MEATHEAD (2011) and NIGHTSHIFT (2012). In 2014 she produced indie hit WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS. She is one of 8 Māori women directors on collaborative feature film WARU. [Read More]
Katie Wolfe
Katie Wolfe Katie is an actor, writer, director and producer for theatre and screen. Her two short films, THIS IS HER (2008) and REDEMPTION (2010), both premiered at Sundance. She has directed over 100 episodes of SHORTLAND STREET, and numerous other episodes of TV for South Pacific Pictures and Māori Television. She is currently a director for WARU. [Read More]
Paula Jones
Paula Jones Working in television for nearly 20 years, Paula’s directorial credits include documentaries GANG GIRLS and ONCE BITTEN. Also a writer, she has several feature scripts in the development. Currently, she is working on two documentaries and two short films, one of which will be included in the collaborative feature film WARU. [Read More]
Renae Maihi
Renae Maihi Celebrated playwright and scriptwriter, Renae Maihi made her debut in film co-writing the short REDEMPTION, which screened at Berlinale and Sundance, and won best short film at Toronto’s imagineNATIVE Film Festival in 2010. She is currently a director on WARU, a collaborative feature film project with eight Māori female directors. [Read More]
Awanui Simich-Pene
Awanui Simich-Pene Awanui Simich-Pene is a director and script supervisor. She has directed for Māori Television including children’s Māori-language shows PŪKORO, MĪHARO and PŪKANA, documentary series including TE HAERENGA, and also FIND ME A MĀORI BRIDE (Season 2). Awanui is one of the eight Māori women directors on the collaborative feature film WARU. [Read More]
Josephine Stewart-Te Whiu
Josephine Stewart-Te Whiu Josephine Stewart-Te Whiu is a writer and actor. She has received critical acclaim for her plays CHALK, RUBY TUESDAY, THE BLACK and fourthcoming SEAN PENN IN HIS BOAT. She is a current participant of Script to Screen's FilmUp Programme, paired with mentor Dana Rotberg. Recently she was a writer on WARU, for director Awanui Simich-Pene. [Read More]
Casey Kaa
Casey Kaa Director of Takitini Productions, Casey Kaa is known for her Māori web series KETE KORERO – MY MAORI MYTHS, and KIA MAU. She is currently short-listed for Fresh Shorts funding with creative partner Nikki Si’ulepa, and together they are also producing intrepid travel webseries #NOTTHESETOURISTS. Currently, she is a director on the collaborative film WARU. [Read More]
Jane Wrightson
Jane Wrightson Jane Wrightson is the Chief Executive of NZ on Air. She has worked in the screen and broadcast sector for over 30 years and previously held chief executive positions with the Broadcasting Standards Authority and SPADA. Jane became NZs first woman Chief Film Censor after working in commissioning, acquisitions and programming-related roles at TVNZ for a decade. [Read More]


Emily Perkins
Emily Perkins Emily is the author of five books including THE FORRESTS, NOVEL ABOUT MY WIFE and the short story collection NOT HER REAL NAME. Her adaptation of Ibsen’s A DOLL’S HOUSE had its first season in Auckland in 2015. She is the co-writer, with director Alison Maclean, of NZ feature film THE REHEARSAL (2016), screening in NZ cinemas from 15 September 2016. [Read More]
Tim White
Tim White Timothy is one of Australia & NZ’s most experienced producers. His Australian credits include DEATH IN BRUNSWICK, COSI, ANGEL BABY, OSCAR & LUCINDA, NED KELLY, SLEEPING BEAUTY, SON OF A GUN and EMBRACE. His NZ credits include NO.2, OUT OF THE BLUE, MR PIP, THE DARK HORSE, CONSENT, MAHANA, CHASING GREAT and PORK PIE. [Read More]
Brita McVeigh
Brita McVeigh Brita McVeigh works with actors, directors, writers and producers, as a dramaturg, coach and consultant. In less than a decade, Brita’s working methodology has contributed to the development of more than 123 feature film, short film, television and theatre projects. She is an advisory board member of Story Camp Aotearoa, a five-day residential retreat for filmmakers. [Read More]
Max Currie
Max Currie Along with penning NZ TV drama (SHORTLAND STREET, STEP DAVE), Max Currie wrote and directed the 2014 festival darling EVERYTHING WE LOVED, which played in competition at strings of festivals worldwide, winning awards including Best Actress and Best Cinematography at the NZ Film Awards, Best Actor at St Tropez, and Best Director at VTXIFF in Texas. [Read More]
Bailey Mackey
Bailey Mackey CEO of Pango Productions, Bailey Mackey (Ngāti Porou, Tuhoe and Rongowhakaata) is an award-winning producer and executive producer of television, with an interest in developing Māori content programming for broad audiences. His credits include HAPPY HOUR, THE GC and SIDEWALK KARAOKE, whose format was recently bought by FremantleMedia. [Read More]
Victoria Kelly
Victoria Kelly Victoria is an award-winning composer and musician. Her original scores include BLACK SHEEP, UNDER THE MOUNTAIN, OUT OF THE BLUE, and FIELD PUNISHMENT NO.1. She co-composed the music for the television series THE ALMIGHTY JOHNSONS with Sean Donnelly and performs regularly with SJD, The Bellbirds, and with Neil Finn. [Read More]