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Erebus Disaster Film Scoops Awards

Erebus Disaster Film Scoops Awards

30 May 2014

A docudrama on the police recovery operation of the Air NZ crash in Antarctica has won four major awards including Best NZ Feature, Best Director, Best Cinematography and Editing at the NZ Documentary Edge Festival this week. The judges said, “It’s a brilliant angle on the untold stories of the Erebus disaster”. The docudrama was commissioned by TVNZ and is soon to be shown on TV One. TVNZ network executive, Jude Callen said, “We are sure that all New Zealanders will be utterly engaged by their extraordinary story.”

The feature film is about the experiences of the eleven Kiwi ‘street cops’ who were sent to the side of Mount Erebus to recover the remains of the crash. Documentary-maker, Charlotte Purdy, had an uncle in the crew on the ill-fated flight and discovered the story through her cousin who heard “the compelling story of the police recovery when she was at a memorial service for the victims of the crash".

The film was shot in Canterbury near Lake Tekapo.

The film will also be shown in a primetime slot on Australia’s SBS network just weeks after it’s television premier. The SBS executive, Kaye Warren said, "this is a fascinating and extremely gripping account of the air disaster on Mt Erebus, it will be a great addition to our Sunday night line-up”.

The NZ on Air funded feature is due to have a theatrical release in the UK which is highly unusual for a New Zealand television documentary. It has started selling around the world and has confirmed television broadcasts in North America, the US and Europe. Reviews of the film have praised it as being “shocking, compelling and brilliantly made”.

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