Joyful, contemporary and meitculously organised

It’s been exactly two weeks since we were lucky enough to attend the 2018 Big Screen Symposium and the three terms that are our title describe our experience.

With a new venue at the ASB Waterfront Theatre and amazing keynote filmmakers and speakers, Wanuri Kahiu, David Lowery and the Prime Minister, Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern, the atmosphere was buzzing.

This year’s theme was ,”Tuning into the Zeitgeist” with many speakers, actively threading their practices back to it, acknowledging it’s presence or openly challenging it’s relevance such as filmmaker Marina McCartney.

As Pacific creatives, our standout session was the VAI one, with nine Pasifika female filmmakers, the aforementioned Marina McCartney, Nicole Whippy, Sharon Whippy, Becs Arahanga, Matasila Freshwater, Dianna Fuemana, Amberley Jo Aumua, Miria George and ‘Ofa-ki-Levuka Guttenbeil-Likiliki, the latter who provided the best soundbytes such as #shutthefridgedoor and #friggingcoconuts They all spoke about what the experience of working on the film and in communion with each other meant and of working with amazing indigenous producers, Kerry Warkia and Kiel McNaughton.

Thank you very much the wonderful Alice Shearman, Executive Director of the New Zealand Writers Guild for this amazing photo of the VAI filmmakers.

This symposium was also the final masterstroke of departing Script to Screen director, Esther Cahill-Chiaroni. A champion of filmmakers and incredible woman of skill, patience and action, we will miss Esther’s ability to listen, synthesise and encourage.

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