Desray Armstrong is an independent producer with a diverse slate of credits. From 2007-2011, Desray and producer/director Chelsea Winstanley ran New Zealand production company StanStrong with a focus on creating compelling, conscious and informative content with a Maori worldview. In recent years, Desray has built up a mass of physical production experience, predominantly in feature film. Credits include MORTAL ENGINES, A WRINKLE IN TIME, HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE, THE REHEARSAL, THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS, Z FOR ZACHARIAH, SLOW WEST and WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS.
Desray has produced award-winning short films including Meathead by Sam Holst (Cannes Film Festival 2011, Berlin Film Festival 2012 Crystal Bear Winner), ELLEN IS LEAVING by Michelle Savill (SXSW Film Festival 2013 Best Narrative Short Winner) and SNOWMEN by Jonathan Brough (Show Me Shorts 2014). In 2017, she produced Michelle Savill’s short film BATS made in association with Toi Whakaari NZ Drama School and line produced Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi and Paul Yates’ mockumentary reality series WELLINGTON PARANORMAL. She has produced visually rich music videos for Aaradhna, Shapeshifter and Tama Waipara directed by Jessica Sanderson and Mike Minogue’s comedy web series THE WATERCOOLER released on NZME’s platform Watch Me.
Awarded Woman to Watch at the 2016 Women in Film & Television Awards, Desray has served on the boards of industry guilds Ngā Aho Whakaari and Women in Film & Television and is active in creating pathways for more women and Māori to step into key creative roles within the feature film landscape. She is currently in postproduction with Jessica Sanderson’s NZFC funded short film WAYS TO SEE and in advanced development with debut feature projects from Michelle Savill, James Ashcroft and Matthew Saville.
Dustin Feneley’s debut feature STRAY is her first feature film as lead producer. Stray had its world premiere at Moscow International Film Festival in April 2018 and is currently playing in over 40 cinemas across the country.