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Wāhine Māori Filmmaker on the Global Festival Circuit

Wāhine Māori Filmmaker Has Three Films Screening on the Global International Film Festival Circuit

Renae Maihi (Ngāti Whakaue, Ngāpuhi) is an award winning and critically acclaimed Writer, Director and Producer in Theatre and Film. She currently has three new films circulating the global international film festival circuit. A possible first for any NZ filmmaker. Two of the films are almost entirely in Te Reo Māori.

The three films travelling the circuit are:

Mannahatta, a short narrative black and white film made in New York as an acknowledgement of the native people who resided in Manhattan, New York for thousands of years. At the time of filming, Renae was in New York for two months on a Professional Development Award from the NZ Film Commission and the Ngāti Whakaue Education Endowment Trust. Mannahatta premiered at ImagineNATIVE in Canada in 2016 and also played at this year’s NZ International Film Festival.

Ka Puta, Ko Au, is a short action film made as part of this year’s Māoriland Film Festival Native Slam initiative with two other native filmmakers. The film is entirely in Te Reo Māori and was made from concept to delivery in 72 hours. Ka Puta, Ko Au will have its international premiere at the ImagineNATIVE Film Festival in Canada this month.

Waru, is a feature film consisting of eight short films. Renae’s film Ranui is part of the Waru anthology and is almost entirely in Te Reo Māori. Waru opens in cinemas around Aotearoa on the 19th of October. It had its NZ premiere at the NZ International Film Festival and its international premiere at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). It is due to screen at ImagineNATIVE in Canada this month and will have its US release at the Hawaii International Film Festival in November.

Renae will be travelling to Toronto to accompany both of her films screening at ImagineNATIVE. She has a longstanding relationship with the film festival that goes back to 2010 when a film she co-wrote with fellow Waru collaborator Katie Wolfe and Katie’s husband Tim Balme won best film. Her next film Butterfly saw her back in Toronto in 2013 with a strong delegation of Māori filmmakers.

This is the second time within a month that Renae will be in Toronto after returning recently from the successful screenings of Waru at TIFF last month.

Going forward, Renae is focused on a career as a global feature filmmaker. She has worked hard to hone her craft and develop the necessary skills required to lead a vision and direct a team. She looks forward to throwing everything into her current project and working with the world class practitioners we have in our local and global film industry.


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