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Witi Ihimaera

Television (Full Length) – 1997

This documentary about Māori writer Witi Ihimaera features him in conversation with filmmaker Merata Mita. Ihimaera traverses his life and writing career, emphasising the importance of family (particularly his mother and grandmother) and his overriding Māori identity. Aileen O'Sullivan's film features a star-studded assemblage of local literature — Keri Hulme, Albert Wendt, publisher Geoff Walker — and a dramatised excerpt from his novel Bulibasha ( featuring Rena Owen, Michael Hurst and Rawiri Paratene), shot roughly two decades before 2016 movie adaptation Mahana.

No matter where I go, I know that I am Māori — That’s the first thing that I know, always. I was born a Māori, live a Māori and I will die a Māori and that’s the great unchangeable fact of my life.
– Witi Ihimaera