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Bill de Friez


Bill de Friez is a documentary filmmaker and film lecturer. He is co-founder of Christchurch-based production company Raconteur, and taught film for many years at Canterbury University's School of Fine Arts. 

De Friez has worked in film and television for most of his adult life, and has considerable experience in live multi-camera direction. While working for state television in the 1980s, he directed and produced on children's shows Spot On and What Now?, plus arts slot Kaleidoscope.

In 1996, de Friez founded Raconteur, with Christchurch producer Veronica McCarthy. Although the company has ventured into work for children, the majority of its work has been in the field of documentary. 

Soon after Raconteur's launch, de Friez directed on-off documentaries about the 1947 Ballantynes' department store fire (Scorched Memories), and the challenges of living on a low income (Making Ends Meet).   

Between the Lines: Denis Glover 1912 - 1980 explored the life and work of Kiwi poet Denis Glover. In 2006 and 2007 de Friez made documentaries for Al Jazeera International's English language channels. This included two programmes for the Every Woman series: Growing up Muslim, the story of a teenage Muslim girl living in a Christian city (Christchurch); and Sister Tui, the life of a Māori nun in a catholic order.

Vanuatu-shot documentary Wan Smol Bag, which screened on Al Jazeera's documentary slot Witness, follows a drama troupe that grew out of the Blacksands squatter camp on the outskirts of Port Vila.

Nuclear Warrior celebrates New Zealand's 40th anniversary of nuclear free status through the experience of Kate Dewes, the woman who took the original United Nations case to the world court to have nuclear weapons declared illegal.

De Friez was born on the West Coast of the South Island, and lives in Christchurch.

Sources include
Raconteur website. Accessed 20 February 2020