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Hero image for The Beginner’s Guide to Prisons

The Beginner’s Guide to Prisons

Television (Full Length Episode) – 1983

Broadcaster Ian Johnstone was an intrepid explorer for TVNZ's 80s Beginner's Guide documentary series; the series embedded personal guides to lift the veil on everything from marae protocol to the Freemasons. This edition sees a crime (embezzlement of TVNZ money) pinned to 47-year-old Johnstone by the CIB and so begins his (fictional) experience of judicial process and imprisonment. A humbled Johnstone aims to convey what life behind bars is like, and bust some myths en route, from "they only serve half their time don’t they?" to "it's like a four star hotel".

I wonder what it would feel like to be sent to prison?
– Johnstone sets out to find the answer

Key Cast & Crew

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Ian Johnstone

Presenter

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Pamela Meekings-Stewart

Producer, Director

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Mike Minehan

Narrator

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Tony Martindale

Sound

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Wayne Vinten

Camera

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Owen Ferrier-Kerr

Editor