Drama and comedy programmes provide unique opportunities to tell New Zealand stories creatively. In this genre we fund scripted drama series, tele-features, scripted and stand-up comedy.
Under the Broadcasting Act special priority is given to drama as a way to reflect and develop New Zealand culture and identity. We fund high-quality local drama that competes with the best international programmes.
These are expensive programmes to produce and they are risky. They receive significant support from NZ On Air to ensure we continue to see our local stories and characters on screen.
To ensure that funded programmes have the best possible chance of success most of our drama and comedy projects will go through a development process before we agree to fund the production.
Most drama funds are invested in programmes to be broadcast during prime time on the mainstream free-to-air channels that reach the largest audiences.
We also fund comedy that delivers a uniquely New Zealand perspective. These shows offer a fresh and funny take on life in New Zealand.
Annually NZ On Air spends around $36million on drama and comedy programmes from the General and Platinum contestable funds.
Terry is on a mission to avenge his father’s murder in this witty action drama which makes for great family viewing.
Waking to find there are no adults and no technology, this brand new teen drama series follows Rose and her friends as they tackle a dystopian world.
Four two-hour murder mysteries set in small town New Zealand will entertain you while giving the grey matter a work-out.
Step Dave is a significant drama investment by NZ On Air. Its creator tells us why it’s important to have local drama on NZ television.
From the award-winning creators of Outrageous Fortune, Westside is a drama series that will take the West family's large and loyal fan-base on a journey back to where it all began.
Filthy Rich is what happens when an incredibly wealthy family finds out it has three cuckoos from the wrong side of the tracks in its golden nest. Who will ultimately rise to the top of the Truebridge Empire?
NZ On Air is the key funder of local television drama in New Zealand. Drama is a high-risk genre because of its production complexity and cost.
Section 37 (c) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 requires NZ On Air to ensure that, in its funding of the production of television programmes, reasonable provision is made to assist in the production of drama and documentary programmes. That makes drama a strategic and statutory priority for NZ On Air.
In light of changing audience behaviour NZ On Air reconsidered our drama funding strategy in 2014. We issued a refreshed strategy in August 2014 which will guide our future investments. It is not a significant change from how we have invested in the past but allows some new flexibility in approach.
There are four funding rounds a year for drama programmes. Decisions in 2016 will be announced in March, May, July, and December.
There are two funding rounds a year for comedy programmes. Decisions in 2016 will be announced in March and August.