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Hero image for Ainsley Gardiner: From Kombi Nation to Boy...

Ainsley Gardiner: From Kombi Nation to Boy...

Interview – 2010

Ainsley Gardiner (Te-Whānau-a-Apanui, Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Awa) fell in love with the magic of the big screen while growing up in Whakatane, where you could find her most Fridays at the local cinema. Her first formal foray into film and television came in 1995 when she joined producer Larry Parr at Kahukura Productions, eventually producing low budget feature Kombi Nation (2003) and co-producing the 26-part TV series Love Bites (2002). Following the demise of Kahukura, Gardiner teamed up with Taika Waititi for Oscar-nominated short film Two Cars, One Night. Soon after that she established Whenua Films with Cliff Curtis. Together the trio struck creative gold with World War II short Tama Tū, Waititi's debut feature Eagle vs Shark and hit movie Boy.

In this ScreenTalk, Gardiner talks about:

  • How great early experiences at Kahukura set her up for her successful career
  • The highs and lows of low budget film production on Kombi Nation
  • The challenges involved in dealing with TV networks
  • Her feelings on the liquidation of Kahukura Productions
  • Her thoughts on Taika Waititi’s early scripts, and how their working relationship developed
  • Her reaction to their Oscar nomination
  • Her strategies in producing Eagle vs Shark
  • How the script for Boy was developed
  • The challenges involved in casting Boy
  • How the Boy soundtrack came about
  • Plans for her next feature project, a horror movie

This video was first uploaded on 19 April 2010, and is available under this Creative Commons licence. This licence is limited to use of ScreenTalk interview footage only and does not apply to any video content and photographs from films, television, music videos, web series and commercials used in the interview.

Interview, Camera and Editing – James Coleman

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