The Edge was an early edition in a series of magazine style arts shows made by the Gibson Group. Later shows included Sunday, Bookenz, Bill Ralston-hosted Backch@t, and Frontseat. Diverging from then-standard Kaleidoscope model (sometimes lengthy documentaries, often on single subjects) The Edge took a faster-paced approach, with multiple pieces in a half hour show. Subjects ranged from the birth of special effects company Weta to early landscape painter Alfred Sharpe. Fronted by writer Mary McCallum, two series and over 60 episodes of the show were produced.
This Jane Campion interview from the first series of arts show The Edge was filmed as The Piano was hitting Kiwi cinemas in 1993. Earlier that year she had become the first (and only) female director to share the top award at the Cannes Film Festival. Here, Campion discusses the antipodean character of her next project ( The Portrait of a Lady) and giving Nicole Kidman a role that isn’t “like a handbag to one of the male stars”. She also muses on working in Hollywood versus her hometown Sydney, and the influence of her New Zealand upbringing on forming her imagination.
This short Auckland-shot Holly Hunter interview for arts show The Edge was filmed as The Piano was released in NZ cinemas in 1993. Hunter discusses playing a cheerleader murderer, and alongside Tom Cruise in The Firm. When weighing up past films she cherishes Raising Arizona and Broadcast News, but The Piano is “the most original story that I've been involved in”, and Jane Campion, “one of the great directors.” In March 1994 Hunter would win an Oscar for Best Actress (alongside Anna Paquin for Best Supporting Actress and Campion for Best Original Screenplay).
This excerpt from arts show The Edge looks at the special effects being crafted for Peter Jackson's Heavenly Creatures. It's an intriguing insight into the early days of Weta, the effects house who went on to be the world-making wizards behind Lord of the Rings, Avatar and District 9. Richard Taylor — now Weta Workshop head — crafts a sea creature; George Port gives a tour of the fledgling Weta Digital (him, a computer and a single room!); and Jackson (in a Tintin t-shirt) breaks down Heavenly Creatures scenes, and muses upon Kiwi ingenuity and taking on Hollywood.