Sorry – due to licensing restrictions,
this clip can't be viewed outside New Zealand.

Thankfully most of NZ On Screen's content
can be viewed from anywhere: browse and enjoy!

We're sorry, but something went wrong

Please try reloading the page

We're sorry, but your browser is unable to play this video content.

Please upgrade your browser, or install the flash plugin.

We're sorry, but this video is currently unavailable on mobile.

Iris Television (Excerpts) – 1984 Drama

Title mask left comp
Title mask right comp
Start video player

Pioneering poet, author and journalist Robin Hyde was originally Iris Wilkinson. Directed by Tony Isaac (The Governor), this ambitious co-production for television mines quotations from Wilkinson's writing to dramatise her life. In a parallel plotline, a writer, actor and director wrestle with how to capture Iris on screen. For Australian Helen Morse (Picnic at Hanging Rock) playing Iris was a privilege — and her "most difficult" role to date. Morse concluded that Iris was "extraordinarily vulnerable emotionally". This excerpt includes a cameo by the writer's real life son Derek Challis.

Morse says that Wilkinson's need to have children in spite of being unmarried would have been not only accepted but accommodated today in a way unheard of in the 30s.
– Actor Helen Morse on social changes explored in telefilm Iris, The Listener, 24 December 1983

Produced by

  • Endeavour Productions

  • Aotea Enterprises


Endeavour Productions


Music produced by Dave Fraser