Becs wrote and directed the short film Laundry at the end of 2016. Laundry was selected for the NZIFF Best Shorts and Show Me Shorts, where it was nominated for four awards. Best Edit, Best Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Film. Laundry is still in it’s festival life, having recently played at ImagineNative in Toronto, San Diego, FIFO in Tahiti, Tampere Film Festival, and Seattle International Film Festival. Becs has also just completed filming on her next film, Hinekura, which follows the journey of a young girl, Hine, as she comes of age and enters the sacred space of women where she is nurtured, challenged and then celebrated. Hinekura is set to release in 2019.
Nicole was born in Suva, Fiji and raised in New Zealand. She holds a Bachelor Of Performing and Screen Arts and is well known for her work as a Theatre and Screen Actor. Nicole is the Founder and Acting Coach at Point Chevalier Drama Club, acting school for youth, and she is a director on ‘The Feijoa Club’ a children’s series for the TVNZ/NZOA ‘Hei Hei’ platform. Nicole is passionate about exploring stories from the Fijian/NZ perspective. Vai is Nicole's film directorial debut.
Mīria is a poet, and writer, director, producer of theatre. An award-winning playwright, Mīria’s work has toured New Zealand, Australia, Hawai’i, Canada and the United Kingdom. Her plays include And What Remains, Sunset Road, The Vultures and The Night Mechanics. Mīria recently directed the Premiere Season of Bless The Child by Hone Kouka for the New Zealand Festival & Auckland Arts Festival. In 2017, Mīria was the Fulbright-Creative New Zealand Pacific Writer in Residence at University of Hawai’i and won the Bruce Mason Playwriting Award. Mīria holds a Masters in Creative Writing from the International Institute of Modern Letters. Also a published poet, The Wet Season is Mīria’s debut collection of poetry, published by the Wai-te-ata Press. Vai is Mīria's film directorial debut.
Dianna’s career as a playwright and theatre director spans 20 years with her plays being published and produced internationally. She holds a Masters Degree with Honors in Theatre from the University of Auckland and has served as an Arts Officer for the Auckland City Council. She crossed over into film making in 2012 when she won New Zealand's Script to Screen Writers Internship with Killer Films in NYC. Her first short film Sunday Fun Day was shot in 2016 and won the Sun Jury Prize at ImagineNative Film Festival, Toronto, 2017. “Bringing Niue and her people to the screen is a rare opportunity. This film gives rise to the women on Niue who keep our traditions, our language, our home fires burning. They allow me to roam free and return to a unique culture that is mine, away from the noise of the world.” Dianna Fuemana
Amberley Jo Aumua is of Samoan and Māori descent from Manurewa, New Zealand. She is a writer/director who holds a Bachelor of Performing and Screen Arts. Her first short film Waiting (17) won the Jury Prize for Best Film at the New Zealand International Film Festival (17), Best Student Film at the Show Me Shorts International Film Festival (17) and was in competition at the Toronto International Film Festival (17). It has currently screened in over 20 film festivals, most recently at the BFI London Film Festival (18). Her recent short film Moa Ma Le Pinko (Chicken & Bingo, 18) made with two other indigenous key creatives, was created as part of the Native Slam film challenge for Māoriland Film Festival where it won the Audience Award and was selected to screen at ImagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival (18). She is currently researching and writing her feature film and working on other projects.
Marina was born and raised in Manukau City, New Zealand. From a Geordie Father, Samoan Mother and Cook Islands step-Mother, she is powerfully aware of her cultural heritage, how this affects the way we are viewed and how we view others. After just over a decade in the fashion industry, as Miss New Zealand and one of the few fashion models of Pacific descent, she returned to the University of Auckland to study film and graduated with a MA (First Class Honours). She is an award-winning filmmaker with films featuring in over 30 festivals, including Palm Springs ShortFest, NZ’s Best Short Film in the NZ International Film Festival, ImagiNATIVE, Hawai’i International Film Festival and the NZ Script Writer Awards. Marina is an experienced teaching fellow, formally based at Pacific Studies, University of Auckland, and her academic areas of expertise are Pacific Studies, Pacific filmmaking, Pacific representation on screen and representations of the Pacific woman. Marina is a PhD candidate exploring Pacific filmmaking at AUT University, proud mother to her daughter, Alena Sevai and is currently working on her feature film, The Return.
Matasila is a writer/director with degrees in Cultural anthropology, Film and Design and is passionate about exploring cultural complexities through storytelling. For the past 5 years, she has been working in animation, recently having directed an episode of the first TV Coproduction with China - a CG 3D animated Children's show. Her NZFC funded short animated film, Shmeat, was an NZIFF Official Selection for New Zealand’s Best Short Film and appeared in a number of festivals including 2016 Sitges International Fantasy Film Festival and was awarded Best Animation in A Night of Horror Film Festival in Sydney. Matasila also has a NZFC funded live action short film in pre-production and a TVNZ New Blood funded animated pilot in pre-production. In 2018, Matasila received a Masters in Screenwriting from the Institute of Modern Letters Victoria University and is currently developing her thesis project/feature film 'Roundabout'.
‘Ofa is a Writer/Director living in Tonga. Known for her activism in women’s rights and gender equality, she was twice nominated for the U.S. Secretary of State International Women of Courage Award recognising her work in women and children’s rights in Tonga. One of her earlier short social change documentaries Pink Hibiscus won the 'Activist Award' in 2011 from the Global Social Change Film Festival & Institute (GSCFFI). In 2014, ‘Ofa was awarded the Commonwealth Pan-Pacific Media Award for Best Concept for a Feature Documentary. She was the first Tongan and Pacific Islander to graduate with a Masters with honours in Film, TV and Media from the University of Auckland in 2000 and also holds a law degree from the University of the South Pacific and a Diploma in International Broadcast Journalism, Thomson Foundation/Cardiff University Wales. Her debut short film The Black Pen (2017) was an Official Selection at the Hawaiian International Film Festival where it also premiered and subsequently screened at Maoriland, The Women’s Film Festival Philadelphia, Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting London, Nuku’alofa Film Festival and the ‘Okalani Film Festival. She is currently researching for her feature film Mountain Heart (based on a Tongan concept; Tonga Mo’unga ki he Loto).
Kai Loma, ‘in between’, that’s me, that’s where I write from, my writing inhabits this space. Fiji born with roots in Savusavu and Vanua Balavu, I grew up in Auckland, now I live and work in Melbourne. I’ve written all my life – poetry, prose and short stories. To see our stories brought to life is a privilege, it shouldn’t be, but it is.