In his early career, feature film director Roger Donaldson put himself in risky positions while filming adventure documentaries, including The Adventure World of Sir Edmund Hillary. With his friend Ian Mune, he created Winners & Losers, a landmark series of dramas based on stories by New Zealand writers, which in turn inspired the pair to adapt CK Stead’s novel Smith’s Dream into feature film Sleeping Dogs. The major turning point in Donaldson’s career was his feature Smash Palace, which screened at Cannes and earned rave reviews. Since Smash Palace, Donaldson has thrived in Hollywood, working with notable actors including Tom Cruise, Mel Gibson, Kevin Costner and Pierce Brosnan. He returned to New Zealand to make the Burt Munro biopic The World’s Fastest Indian, starring Anthony Hopkins.
When not riding the motorcycles he loves, Craig Hall performs in a wide variety of acting roles. His big screen debut was in Westie celebration Savage Honeymoon; his first major TV role was playing the sexy but dumb Clint in The Strip. He has also appeared in Outrageous Fortune and movie hit The World’s Fastest Indian.
Award-winning singer and actor Annie Whittle has tried most things in the entertainment business and has been successful at all of them. She has appeared in a range of home-grown TV shows including A Week of It, The Makutu on Mrs Jones, The Billy T James Show, Heartland, Shortland Street, and Outrageous Fortune. She has also graced the silver screen in the feature films Trial Run and The World’s Fastest Indian.
Actor Greg Johnson began his career as a stand-up comedian. His first acting role was in the film The End of the Golden Weather. Since then, he has appeared in a wide range of TV shows, films and commercials, and is perhaps best known for roles in Shortland Street, Outrageous Fortune and Go Girls. He has won two acting awards, for performances in TV series City Life, and 2010 movie The Insatiable Moon.
When not riding the motorcycles he loves, Craig Hall has acted in everything from Outrageous Fortune to The World’s Fastest Indian and Australian TV hit A Place to Call Home.
Some of Antony Starr’s first roles in front of the camera were on Shortland Street, where he played three different characters. But in contrast to playing brothers Van and Jethro West in Outrageous Fortune, these first roles were played one at a time not all at once. In the intervening years, Starr has breathed life into scripts from many of NZ’s most popular film and television productions.