Writer Rachel Lang, MNZM, has played a major hand in a host of New Zealand television dramas, including Outrageous Fortune, the iconic saga of a West Auckland family trying to go straight. Her CV also includes the long-running Go Girls, small town dramas Jackson's Wharf and Mercy Peak, plus Westside, The Almighty Johnsons, This is Not My Life, Filthy Rich and The Blue Rose.
Dean O’Gorman starred in his first movie (Bonjour Timothy) at the age of only 17. Since then he has had leading roles in another four, including a 2017 remake of classic road movie Goodbye Pork Pie. En route O'Gorman has played dwarves (The Hobbit), jealous brothers (The Bad Seed), American movie legends (Trumbo) and Norse gods (The Almighty Johnsons).
Toi Whakaari graduate Neill Rea first won attention as the likeable if mildly-unhinged Scotty, one of the Dunedin students caught up in crime in hit movie Scarfies (1999). Since then Rea has embarked on a dual career as owner-operator of Auckland casting agency Fly Casting, while taking on a number of television and voice roles of his own. His work as casting director includes 2012 TV movie What Really Happened - Votes for Women, and movie Kiwi Christmas. In 2014 he starred as Detective Mike Shepherd, in the first of multiple seasons of Prime’s feature-length crime series The Brokenwood Mysteries.
Kirsty Cameron started in short film and art installation, before costume designing the first of around 20 feature films — including the acclaimed Whale Rider, Slow West, and No. 2. Her list of awards also includes The Orator and TV movie Jean, about aviator Jean Batten. Cameron's third short as writer/ director, teen fable The Lethal Innocents, was invited to festivals in Sweden, Germany and the USA.
Donald Duncan has worked underwater, on snow, and in Narnia. Raised on a Waikato farm, Duncan trained in sound, then moved into camerawork. The early 90s saw him shooting comedy User Friendly, the darkly stylish Jack Be Nimble and acclaimed short Lovelock. After helping set the style of Xena: Warrior Princess, Duncan was NZ Film-awarded for Snakeskin. He has shot a number of US productions down under.
The multi-talented Jackie van Beek emerged from Wellington’s theatre scene in the 1990s. After directing a run of award-winning shorts, her first feature The Inland Road was invited to the 2017 Berlin Film Festival. She went on to co-direct, co-write and co-star in comedy The Breaker Upperers, with Madeleine Sami. As an actor, van Beek is probably best known for playing a vampire groupie on What We Do in the Shadows.
Peter Feeney is a veritable Swiss Army knife of the screen, with credits as an actor, casting director and acting tutor. Feeney's 20 year plus acting CV ranges from drama (as Rose-Noelle skipper John Glennie, in TV movie Abandoned), kids TV (The Cul de Sac), comedy (Auckland Daze), New Zealand-shot US shows (Spartacus), and film. He won rave reviews as a mad scientist in movie hit Black Sheep.
Sound recordist Dick Reade's list of awards includes gongs for his work on The Navigator, Mt Zion, After the Waterfall and When Love Comes — and an Emmy nomination for TV’s Buggin’ with Ruud. In 2007 he was named SPADA/Onfilm industry champion. After more than a decade with state television, Reade went freelance in the early 80s. These days he runs his own studio in West Auckland.
Actor and singer (Strawpeople) Stephanie Tauevihi started in TV at age 15, reporting for TV3 youth series InFocus. She spent seven years playing feisty paramedic Donna Heka on Shortland Street. Her fraught relationship with Rangi was a major plotline — their wedding was the centrepiece of the series’ 2000th episode. Her performance in Stephen Sinclair’s Russian Snark won her Best Supporting Actress at the 2010 Qantas Awards.
Brendan Donovan’s debut short Here (2001), made while he was directing commercials in the US, starred Lee Majors as an aging hitman. Since returning to NZ Donovan has pursued drama, winning Qantas awards for he innovative Insiders Guide to Love, and TV movie Aftershock (2008). His first feature was family drama The Hopes & Dreams of Gazza Snell. Donovan also lectures in directing at Auckland University.