Interview

Sugar and Spice - Funny As Interview

Jonathan Brugh and Jason Hoyte were once the shirtless, high energy, tights wearing 90s comedy duo Sugar and Spice. Here the pair reminisce about having fun on stage, thriving on failing and more...including: Being introduced through mutual friend Brendhan Lovegrove, and immediately hitting it off  Feeling exhilarated after their second ever gig was a "hideous failure", with the audience throwing ice at them  "Pretending" to be comedians by wearing no clothes and being messy, because they didn't know how to make jokes  Performing on comedy show Pulp Comedy for the first time using baked beans and shaving cream Hoyte recalling the "tremendous thrill" of acting in TV comedy Seven Periods with Mr Gormsby — "I still get teachers coming up to me and telling me how much they love Gormsby" Brugh's joy in working and improvising on hit movie What We Do in the Shadows — including the beloved scene where his character Deacon showcases his erotic dancing skills

Interview

Jackie van Beek: On the importance of chaos in filmmaking...

Interview, Camera and Editing – Andrew Whiteside

Jackie van Beek is an actor, director and writer who first honed her storytelling skills in theatre. She has acted in a variety of television and film roles, and directed several award-winning short films. In 2017 van Beek directed her first feature film The Inland Road, then co-wrote, co-directed and co-starred in hit comedy The Breaker Upperers, with Madeleine Sami.

Riot Squad

The Newmatics, Music Video, 1981

This song is from New Zealand’s troubled winter of 1981. The Springbok Tour gave the term “riot squad” currency throughout the country — but the Auckland live music scene and the police were already enduring a very fraught relationship. This number from Auckland ska/soul band The Newmatics, released on the band’s Broadcast OR double 7" EP, was actually written about a 1980 police raid on XS Cafe in Airedale Street. The Keystone Cops music video is classic early 80s TVNZ Avalon and features actors Ross Jolly and Michael Wilson as two thirds of the 'blue shadow'.

Bad Note for a Heart

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1990

Filmed at Bethells Beach and in a tunnel somewhere in the Auckland suburb of Ellerslie, this award-winning video from future Whale Rider director Niki Caro traces a sea nymph, a beating heart and an elderly gentleman's struggle with his hat. Clearly reluctant to move into the 90s, the eternally rock Shayne Carter looks splendid in dark eye shadow — a look he later told RipItUp was "definitely a low point in rock". Bad Note for a Heart was judged best music video at the 1990 New Zealand Music Awards.

The Living Room - Series Two, Episode Ten

Television, 2004 (Full Length Episode)

This final episode from series two of the arts series is presented by Taika Cohen (aka Taika Waititi) and his alter ego, silly German Gunter Schliemann. Taika makes short film Tama Tū, performs as vampire Diego (later reborn in What We Do in the Shadows) and performs Taika’s Incredible Show at Bats Theatre. Included are scenes from his early, little-seen short film John & Pogo. Also featured are artist Siren Maclaine (aka Siren Deluxe) and her feminist erotica; Caroline Robinson’s large-scale Auckland motorway sculptures; and comics artist Colin Wilson (Judge Dredd, Blueberry).

Series

The Life and Times of Te Tutu

Television, 2000–2001

This comedy series followed the daily life of an 1800s Māori chief (Pio Terei) and his interactions with other Māori and newly-arrived Pākehā settlers. Nothing was sacred as a subject for satire, from disease to English gold lust. Created by Ray Lillis (Pio!), the series features Rachel House (Whale Rider), Jason Hoyte (Late Night Big Breakfast), William Davis (Belief) and Jonathan Brugh (What We Do in the Shadows). Guests included Dalvanius and Charles Mesure. It was produced by Terei’s Pipi Productions for TVNZ over two seasons; Terei had shifted from TV3 after his series Pio! in 1999. 

Mega Time Squad

Film, 2018 (Trailer)

John (Anton Tennet) is a small town crim with a big time dream: to abscond from Thames to Paeroa with his boss’s sister. A robbery gone wrong and a mysterious Chinese bracelet send his plans into a spin, and he finds that going back to the future has a price. Hong Kong action movies, Kiwi slapstick and time travel head to the heartland in Tim van Dammen’s follow-up to Romeo and Juliet: A Love Song. Jonathan Brugh (What We Do in the Shadows) plays the villain; Milo Cawthorne and Yoson An are also in the cast. Mega Time Squad was selected for the Fantasia festival in Montreal.

Serenade

The Naked and Famous, Music Video, 2008

The lyrics detail the intensity of thwarted love, and the accompanying video is a DIY delight — mixing an origami fortune teller concept with back-projected Animalia-style shadow puppets. From the 2008 EP This Machine, this video marked the first collaboration between design studio Special Problems (Campbell Hooper and Joel Kefali) and the band. The fertile partnership would go on to yield multiple music videos (including the breakout promo for ‘Young Blood’), plus the artwork on a number of their releases.

Artist

Liam Finn

In 2007 Rolling Stone magazine named Liam Finn as one of that year's top ten ‘artists to watch' and explained that if you mixed a bit of Elliot Smith with a touch of despair and added a leprechaun, Finn would be the result. Accompanied by such applause, the singer-songwriter has assuredly stepped out of his famous father Neil's shadow, thanks to his achievements with the band Betchdupa, formed in 1997, and the success of his solo albums I'll Be Lightning (which Q magazine named one of the 50 best albums of 2007), FOMO (2011) and The Nihilist (2014).

Done

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1992

The first single from the final Straitjacket Fits album features a typically oblique Shayne Carter lyric hinting at despair and defiance  possibly touching on the departure of founding member Andrew Brough. The overcast lyrical content and lurching, hard edged guitars find their match in this black and white video from director Andrew Dominik, which shrouds the band in studio shadows. Dominik went on to direct lauded films Chopper, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and Killing Them Softly (the latter two starring Brad Pitt).