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Hero image for Close Up - Following the Leader (Jim Bolger)

Close Up - Following the Leader (Jim Bolger)

Television (Excerpts) – 1986

This report from 80s current affairs show Close Up introduces the New Zealand public to future Prime Minister Jim Bolger — shortly after the “lightning coup” that saw him unseating urban lawyer Jim McLay, to become leader of the National Party. The  focus is on Bolger’s rural roots as a father and farmer. There is also praise from political historian Barry Gustafson, and a mini journalistic joust with ex PM Robert Muldoon, over whether he supports the new party leader. In 1987 Labour was re-elected for another term; Bolger’s party swept to victory in 1990. 

The man who'll carry the National Party's standard into the next election is the first to admit he has a very non-standard background: son of immigrant Irish stock, father of nine, and staunch Catholic.
– Reporter Brett Dumbleton

Key Cast & Crew

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Brett Dumbleton

Presenter

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Ross Stevens

Director

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Liz Feary

Studio Director

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John Sheils

Computer Graphics

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Paul West

Telecine

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Andrew Robson

Videotape

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