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Hero image for Riki Ellison - The Defender

Riki Ellison - The Defender

Television (Full Length) – 2009

An All-American boy from NZ, Christchurch born Riki Ellison (Ngāi Tahu) is the subject of this Māori Television documentary. After moving to the United States at age eight, he made a stellar career out of “kinetic energy intercept”. A fearless player with an intimidating “Māori look”, he was a champion college football defensive linebacker and three-time Superbowl winner with the San Francisco 49ers. Then, inspired by Ronald Reagan, he became a leading advocate for missile defence systems; while, along the way, reconnecting with his whānau and heritage.

This world needs dream makers not dreamers to make our world, our society, our community, our village better than it is today.
– Riki Ellison

Key Cast & Crew

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Dane Giraud

Director, Writer

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Glenn Elliott

Director, Producer

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Julia Parnell


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Dean Judd

Sound Mix

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Hank Snell

Additional Editing

Generic Profile image for Guy Quartermain

Guy Quartermain

Additional Camera

See all 12 credits

Produced by

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Buto Productions


Logo for Buto Productions

Buto Productions