From left to right, Patrick Sherratt, director of the Eastern Screen Alliance, Daniel Betty, member of the board of ESA, and Karen Taiapa, owner of Te Awa Talent. Photo/Warren Buckland
A local regional film office that supports the development of film productions in Hawke’s Bay is working to create a thriving film production industry in the area.
Eastern Screen Alliance hopes to be the first point of contact for national or international film productions made in Hawke’s Bay and has partnered with local production company Te Awa Talent to create a database of regional actors.
The move follows a resource consent application filed by an Auckland film company to build a $40 million studio development project on 24 hectares in Hawke’s Bay.
Working in the community has always been a passion for Hastings-based filmmaker and Te Awa Talent owner Karen Taiapa.
She says the partnership with ESA is a “great opportunity” to encourage people to develop their creativity in the local film industry.
“I hope to realize a platform for artists to be recognized in this field of entertainment in the near future.”
ESA Director Patrick Sherratt said that nationally Hawke’s Bay was not considered a film industry region and the idea of a film industry based here was not not new.
“Over the past few years (ESA) has built a database of people who work behind the camera and the database project is about finding people who may be in front of the camera,” Sherratt said.
“It means that when projects come in from overseas or from the country or even from our own region, we have those people in our database who can be used to support those projects.
“People in industry will want to move here to work here because it’s just a nice place to live.”
ESA board member and professionally trained actor Daniel Betty said the region is already home to a filmmaking community.
“We have a lot of players but we’ve never really compiled them into a format where we can start communicating opportunities with them.”
He said they were trying to create an incubator environment for the film industry. The group is looking for suitable premises that can accommodate actors, scriptwriters and the production team under one roof.
“Our region has not yet been discovered.”
• Aspiring actors can go to the Eastern Screen Alliance website and register for the database.