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Lost in the Garden of the World

Television (Full Length) – 1975

On Making Lost in the Garden of the World

I wanted to experience the Cannes Film Festival, so we decided the best way to get there was to make a film. Crew and equipment would be supplied by a producer at Thames television. NZ TV would supply post production costs, and interviewer Michael Heath and I would donate our time.

We arrived in London and discovered, to our horror, the Thames producer had just thrown himself off a roof, so no one at Thames knew about our project. In record breaking time, I managed to contact New Zealand filmmakers living in London.

Michael Hardcastle would operate the camera, Suzy Pointon would do a crash course in sound recording. Mike Seresin gave me an introduction to a film company in Paris who would rent us 16mm camera gear. A commercial company in London I used to edit for, supplied the film stock.

I paid for everything on my credit card and hoped John O’Shea would find finance before the bill was due to be paid. We rented a van and drove to Cannes, found a cheap hotel and slept four to a room. Dustin Hoffman thought it was hysterical, and took us all out to dinner and charged Universal. We discovered Herzog living in a VW van up in the hills, and were able to break the news he had won one of the main awards at the festival.

Back in London, I edited the film and showed it to John. He was able to come up with some finance to cover my credit card bills just in time.