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This Week in Wellywood

Last night at Park Road Post, a big crowd for the WIFT-organised showing of The Vintner's Luck (opening tomorrow) and a Q&A with Niki Caro. Tonight, two events, one after the other. First, a discussion of the cinematic, at the New Zealand Film Archive:

Here's what organiser Script to Screen says about this event:
Scripts are often rejected or critiqued on the basis that they are not ‘cinematic’, and are therefore unworthy of the big screen. But to writers the term is often unclear, meaning different things to different people. Is the term merely used as a weapon by arbiters of taste, or a catch all for any number of perceived deficiencies, or is it a way of defining the appropriate medium for a story?

Scriptwriter and teacher Ken Duncum will lead a rigorous discussion with producer John Barnett (Whale Rider, Sione’s Wedding), NZFC Head of Development Marilyn Milgrom and scriptwriter Graeme Tetley (Out of the Blue, Vigil) about what they believe are the defining elements of a cinematic story.

6.30 drinks, 7pm start, The New Zealand Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St, Wellington, $5 koha appreciated, all welcome.

Then, at 8.15, round the corner in Courtenay Place—at the Paramount—another great event, Guillermo Del Toro in person, interviewed by Joanathan King, whose Under the Mountain premiered at Toronto and opens here 10 December.

This is a fundraiser for One For the Road, Kelly Kilgour and Jamie McCaskill's film adaptation of their successful stage musical, It's a Whanau Thing. Sam Kelly —like Kelly Kilgour a former student of Ken Duncum, at the Institute of Modern Letters— will direct One For the Road.

Here's more details from the Paramount:
Oscar-winner Guillermo Del Toro may be a big guy in Hollywood circles but the director of The Hobbit is only too happy to help some of the local film industry's "little guys". He has pledged his name and support to a question-and-answer fundraising event for Wellington producer Bonnie Slater and director Sam Kelly's first feature film, One for the Road. Billed as New Zealand’s first musical drama, it's slated to shoot early next year and follows the fortunes of a struggling, small town band.

"We're thrilled to have Guillermo's support," Slater says. "He has not done any event of this kind in New Zealand and it’s a coup to have attracted him to headline our fundraiser and help promote our cause. "I would have asked Guillermo to help make the film, but I know he's overworked with projects abroad and, of course, that little low-budget film he's shooting here soon called The Hobbit!"

"I've been pretty busy with various projects," Del Toro acknowledges, "but talent lies in your choices. And I believe in Bonnie so I'm happy to help her where I can."


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