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Hero image for Your Most Humble and Obedient Servant, James Cook

Your Most Humble and Obedient Servant, James Cook

Short Film (Full Length) – 1970

One of the last films made by Jeremy Sykes before his death in the Antarctic in a helicopter accident, this NFU short commemorates the 1969 Cook bicentennial. It traces Cook’s first voyage to New Zealand and his charting of the coastline. Contemporary illustrations and dramatic camerawork are used to follow his six-month journey around Aotearoa. It also highlights Cook's navigational skills as he sailed the Endeavour, home to 94 men, two greyhounds and a goat, through uncharted waters, helping earn him his reputation as "explorer extraordinary and servant of the King".

Wherever he went he was scrupulously fair and on this coast he understood that he was the stranger and the Māoris were the rightful owners of the land. At no time would he allow his men the luxury of exploiting them.
– Narrator Peter Gwynne

Key Cast & Crew

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William Austin

As: Voice of James Cook

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Lynton Diggle


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Geoffrey Scott


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Ron Bowie


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Peter Gwynne


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Jeremy Sykes

Director, Writer, Editor

See all 13 credits