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Stand-Up Comedy And Short Film Series Returns


Popular Stand-Up Comedy And Short Film Series Return

NZ On Air funding sees the return of two comedy programmes providing a showcase for New Zealand comedians, and the return of Short Cuts II - a second series of short films on television.

The Big Comedy Gala 2000 and The TV2 Billy T Awards 2000, are two comedy events staged annually by the New Zealand Comedy Trust. Jo Tyndall, NZ On Air Chief Executive, said that the broadcasting of these events gave stand-up comedians a rare opportunity to show-off their talents on national television.

"They're the hottest comedy tickets in town. The Big Comedy Gala 2000 launches the New Zealand comedy festival and showcases the array of performers involved. The Billy T Awards 2000 is the finale to the festival and celebrates New Zealand's best comedic talent."

Producer, Mandy Toogood of Phoenix TV, said that in 1999 the NZ Laugh Festival celebrated its biggest success to date, with 180,000 people passing through the doors of the various venues around the country.

"New Zealand audiences really respond to New Zealand's stand-up talent. The screening of both performance shows gives everyone the chance to see great New Zealand comedy, even if they can't get out to see it performed live," said Ms Toogood.

Shortcuts II

Shortcuts II is a series of short films, packaged into a half- hour format, which provides an opportunity for youth and art- oriented audiences to see something a little bit different. While most of the films are made in New Zealand, the producers, Morrison Grieve Ltd, are planning to include a small selection of foreign short films.

Ms Tyndall said that the series had a good following last season and expected similar ratings again.

NZ On Air has allocated $110,070 to Phoenix TV to produce the 1 hour programme The Big Comedy Gala 2000, and $115,500 to Phoenix TV to produce The TV2 Billy T Awards 2000. Both comedies will screen on TV2 later this year.

Morrison Grieve Ltd has been allocated $100,000 to produce the 13 x half-hour series of Short Cuts II, which will be broadcast on both TV3 and TV4.


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