Diverse Māōri stories to be told in new documentaries


Media Releases · Television · 13th March 2015

A number of diverse programmes featuring Māori stories have been supported by NZ On Air, bringing more of NZ’s unique culture and heritage to TV screens.

Kanikani is a new six-part documentary a series that will follow a group of young Māori hip hop dancers from South Auckland on their journey to the World Champs in Las Vegas.

On Prime, Beyond The Bully will shed a light on the issue of bullying through the deeply personal stories of former All Black Norm Hewitt and Hollywood actor Manu Bennett.

Three Pakipūmeka documentaries for Māori Television will explore three very different stories. Raids To Reconciliation looks at the journey of activist and kaumatua Tame Iti, from the 2007 Urewera police raids that branded him and others as terrorism suspects, to the year of reconciliation with Police in 2014.

Haka & Guitar will reflect on a ground-breaking approach to peacekeeping employed in Bougainville 18 years ago by the NZ Defence force. Our largely Māori peacekeepers left their weapons behind and took ‘the haka and guitar as the weapons of peace’.

The third Pakipūmeka documentary is Hautoa Ma!, the story of the burgeoning world of Māori film-making, following a great year for Maōri on the big screen.

Meanwhile the entertaining and informative Māori youth programme 2Kaha will return for a second season, showcasing young successful Māori.

“Māori programmes in English are an essential way of ensuring all New Zealanders have the opportunity to experience stories from the Māori world, and pick up some Te Reo along the way, ” says NZ On Air Chief Executive Jane Wrightson.

Funding details

2Kaha 2015, 25 x ½ hr, Whitebait Productions for TV2, $1,025,000
Kanikani, 6 x ½ hr, Rogue Productions for Māori Television, $279,183
Beyond The Bully, 1 x 1hr, Te Amokura Productions for Prime, $177,000
Haka & Guitar, 1 x 1hr, TMI Pictures for Māori Television, $100,000
Hautoa Ma!, 1 x 1hr, Blue Bach Productions for Māori Television, $71,700
Raids To Reconciliation, 1 X 1hr, Conbrio Media for Māori Television, $50,000