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Documentaries Fly to Greater Heights

26 November 2001

Media Release

Documentaries Fly to Greater Heights

New Zealanders' growing fascination with our own stories, culture and history has been recognised with more than $2.4 million invested into nearly 40 hours of documentary programming for 2002.

The funding comes from NZ On Air, and covers the development of a bold new series on New Zealand's history, a social history programme on flight attendants in New Zealand, and a fifth series of Documentary New Zealand.

NZ On Air has invested support in the first, developmental, stage of New Zealand's most ambitious documentary series to date. Frontier of Dreams will be an in-depth and riveting exploration of the history and growth of New Zealand. The NZ On Air funding for this stage will help with the research and development of the historical essays from which scripts will be written.

"Frontier of Dreams is a major project for TV One and NZ On Air. It typifies the type of in-depth, high quality documentary making that NZ On Air wants to support for the New Zealand audience. The concept and process that Whakapapa Productions is following fits in perfectly with NZ On Air's documentary strategy," said NZ On Air chief executive, Jo Tyndall.

"The success of series such as New Zealand Wars and Our People, Our Century, tells us that New Zealanders love these type of documentaries."

Next off the block, the highly successful and very popular TV One Documentary New Zealand series will return for its fifth series next year.

"NZ On Air is very pleased to be able to support the continuation of Documentary New Zealand in partnership with TV One. In particular, we can look forward to the production of five Maori documentary programmes within this series," said Ms Tyndall.

Last, but not least, Coffee, Tea or Me? is a one-off documentary looking back over the history of the New Zealand flight attendant from the military styled "Mrs Pilot" of the 50s, to the sex object "Trolley Dolly" of the 60s and 70s, and the equal rights court battles of the 80s.

"The changing roles of the air hostess parallels the changing role of women in New Zealand society, and the court battles that these women fought are part of a wider, intriguing and fascinating insight into the working life of an air hostess and social changes in New Zealand," said Ms Tyndall.

NZ On Air allocated $2,000,000 for the production of 25 one-hour documentaries to screen within the Documentary New Zealand strand, $343,710 to Whakapapa Productions for stage one of Frontier of Dreams, and $145,694 to Gaylene Preston Productions for a one-hour documentary Coffee, Tea or Me? All documentaries will screen on TV One.

ends

Funding details:

Frontier of Dreams (stage 1) $343,710 Broadcaster: TV One Producer: Vincent Burke & Ray Waru, Whakapapa Productions

Documentary New Zealand 5 $2,000,000 25 x 1 hour Broadcaster: TV One Producer: Various

Coffee, Tea or Me? $145,694 1 x 1 hour Broadcaster: TV One Producer: Gaylene Preston, Gaylene Preston Productions

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