We use cookies to help us understand how you use our site, and make your experience better. To find out more read our privacy policy.




Full screen
Video quality

Low 0 MB

High 0 MB


Hero image for Jennifer Ward-Lealand: From child star to accomplished actress...

Jennifer Ward-Lealand: From child star to accomplished actress...

Interview – 2009

Jennifer Ward-Lealand began her celebrated acting career as a child, and made her screen debut on Gone Up North for a While at age nine. In her teens she played rebellious Jan in soap opera Close to Home, attended drama school, and on venturing into the professional world, started winning roles, including TV series Seekers, with Temuera Morrision. Her film roles include starring in colonial melodrama Desperate Remedies.

In this ScreenTalk, Ward-Lealand talks about:

  • Playing rebellious teenager Jan on Close to Home
  • Her experience in theatre, including with innovative Auckland theatre company Theatre Corporate
  • Working with Temuera Morrison on 1986 TV drama Seekers
  • Acting in Gregor Nicholas's About Face drama Danny and Raewyn
  • Appreciating working with acclaimed cinematographer Leon Narbey on The Footstep Man
  • The extraordinary experience of working on Desperate Remedies, wearing the lavish costumes, and acting with Kevin Smith
  • Working in Australia on 1990s sketch comedy series Full Frontal, after the producers saw her performing in The Front Lawn
  • Loving the creativity of working on Larry Parr’s Fracture
  • Appearing in TV series Interrogation
  • Meeting her husband, fellow actor Michael Hurst, and later working with him on Hercules and Xena
  • Her theatre shows reprising Marlene Dietrich songs and cabaret classics

This video was first uploaded on 21 March 2009, 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 - Clare O'Leary. Camera and Editing - Leo Guerchmann