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Tala Pasifika - Talk of the Town

Television, 1995 (Full Length)

Tala Pasifika was a pioneering Pacific Island drama series; this award-winning episode is one of six films that screened on TV One in 1996. 'Talk of the Town' is an entertaining short drama about Cindy (Henry Ah-Foo Taripo), a fa'afafine who has grown up to become a cabaret performer. She breaks the fourth wall from her dressing room to tell her story, which begins in her youth when her father (Alvin Fitisemanu) is impressed by her culinary skills and assigns her to the role of family cook.

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Lisa Taouma

Producer, Director

Lisa Taouma has a laufala bag spilling over with Pasifika screen credits. She is senior director for Tagata Pasifika, helmed TV2’s Polyfest and has made documentaries on subjects from Samoan tattoo to fa’afafine. She produced pioneering PI youth show Fresh with Mario Gaoa, and in 2014 launched Polynesian online community Coconet. Taouma is also an academic, and penned short films Brown Sugar and Talk of the Town.  

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Oscar Kightley

Actor, Writer

PI Kiwi Oscar Kightley is a writer, actor, presenter and director. After co-creating The Naked Samoans, he worked with the comedy troupe on five seasons of hit series bro’Town, NZ's first animated show to play in prime-time. Kightley has also worked with the Samoans as an actor and writer in hit feature Sione’s Wedding and its 2012 sequel. In 2013 he took on a serious role, starring as the detective in TV series Harry.

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Lani Tupu

Actor

Lani Tupu, sometimes credited as Larney Tupu or Lani John Tupu, is the first Samoan to have starred in a Kiwi television series; in 1985 he segued from theatre onto the screen, to play doctor David Miller on period TV drama Country GP. The New Zealand-raised Samoan then relocated to Australia, where his many screen roles include Lantana, sci fi success Farscape, and a TV reboot of Mission Impossible.

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Stephen Stehlin

Producer

Stephen Stehlin is longstanding producer of Tagata Pasifika, TVNZ's magazine style show focusing on Pacific Islanders in New Zealand. Of Samoan descent, Stehlin has been honoured as both a Samoan matai chief, and as a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.