9 November 2010
SEEKING EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST
TVNZ and NZ On Air are delighted to support the commissioning of a new strand of half-hour special interest stories entitled NZ Stories.
Both are eager to extend the current range special interest programming beyond the current titles.
TVNZ Commissioner Jude Callen said "Essentially this series came about because I often receive interesting one off people stories proposals but can't progress them because they either don't fit our primetime strands and/or don't hold for an hour. But many would make a great half-hour story."
Jane Wrightson, CEO NZ On Air, added "Our existing longstanding Special Interest series provide an important focus for their target audiences. But we know that the growth and increasing diversity of the New Zealand population provides a further wealth of stories about New Zealanders which currently aren't being told."
DIVERSITY therefore is the catch-cry of NZ Stories. The series will provide an opportunity to explore, through individual stories, interesting lives featuring the different ethnicities, ages, gender specific issues, religious and philosophical beliefs, sexual orientation, and individual abilities that make up New Zealand's people. Ultimately the series aims to give New Zealanders a greater understanding of the diversity of the people we live alongside. Each episode will focus on a specific New Zealander or small group of New Zealanders and give viewers an insight into their life, beliefs, abilities and challenges through a great story.
And yes that other word in the title "stories" is crucial. It is essential that these half-hour documentaries have a strong, engaging story to tell rather than just be a potted life history of an individual. We are looking for contemporary rather than historical stories with engaging characters that will capture the viewer's attention immediately and then hold it throughout the half-hour.
In order to fairly represent the whole of New Zealand it is our intention to seek stories across the length and breadth of the country. We are looking for 25 x half-hour stories in total. To expedite and best manage the process TVNZ and NZ On Air have approached three production companies to operate as a "pod" for their particular area (Auckland, Wellington and the South Island). Each "pod" company may generate and execute story ideas themselves; however they will also consider single ideas from individual writers, directors and researchers.
If you have a story idea you want to put forward for consideration contact any one of the following three pod companies:
Auckland - Project Melting Pot Ltd
Richard Nauck, Rob Harley 09 835 0580
Wellington - Pacific Screen Ltd
Amanda Evans 04 475 7585
South Island/Christchurch - Paua Productions Ltd 03 377 7642
Virginia Wright 027 487 0517, Veronica McCarthy 021 321 264
Here's how it works. If you have an idea you wish to submit for consideration please contact one of the "pod" companies as soon as possible to discuss the idea. As the series is expected to start transmission in the first quarter of 2011 the first selection of stories will be made in late December. The remaining will be selected in the New Year. Pod company executive producers will decide which stories they will put forward for final approval by TVNZ and NZ On Air, and how best to execute specific projects. Following discussions with the individual story originator the pod company will negotiate and determine the respective roles of all involved; the crediting arrangements and agree on the budget; use of pod company resources and production schedule required for each project. This isn't an opportunity for co-productions. The pod company will acquire copyright for the stories they produce for the series and TVNZ and NZ On Air will deal directly and contract with the pod companies only.
It is intended that TV One will screen the series within its Sunday morning non-commercial PGR line up of other special interest programming in 2011.
Each story will be 29 minutes in duration with no breaks. TVNZ also envisages further screenings on TVNZ 6 or 7 and will provide access to the series via online platforms.
We look forward to getting underway with this initiative as soon as possible and look forward to the successful collaboration of all involved.
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