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New Initiative For Maori Filmmakers

New Initiative for Maori Filmmakers

Te Paepae Ataata, a New Zealand Film Commission initiative, will celebrate its signing in Auckland on Wednesday 21 November

Through the provision of mentoring, guardianship and funding, the Paepae of senior Maori industry practitioners will oversee the development of Maori films written, produced and directed by Maori.

Paora Maxwell, producer and treasurer for Nga Aho Whakaari says it is a major initiative.

"I believe that it will release a torrent of Maori writing talent into the industry. Producers will also love this as it means there will be more stories to choose from," says Mr Maxwell.

The kaupapa of Te Paepae Ataata is to ensure Tangata Whenua cinema is a dynamic constituent voice in New Zealand.

A board of six respected industry people and kaumatua will be selected to make up Te Paepae Ataata. Nga Aho Whakaari, the only national body representing Maori in Film, Television and Video, will be engaged in the nomination, strategy and practice of Te Paepae Ataata.

Award winning film producer and director Tearepa Kahi adds: "This is a giant and important leap forward that has been years in the making due to the pioneering efforts, achievements and struggles of filmmakers such as Merata Mita, Barry Barclay, the late Don Selwyn and many more."

The launch at the Rialto in Newmarket, Auckland, will be attended by members of the Maori creative community, as well as industry, iwi, education and government representatives. The evening will involve speeches, the screening of four Maori short films and a formal signing of the agreement between Nga Aho Whakaari and the New Zealand Film Commission.

ENDS

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