The country is on a roll. Producers are financing localfilms at unprecedented budget levels, footloose productions are arriving fromHollywood with great frequency and audiences are swarming into cinemas to watchthe pick of the local crop.
Moreover, film-maker Peter Jackson is pumping money intoinfrastructure and skills development that can be accessed by all, ensuring thenation can continue making films.
Overheard this year
'In a lot of places people are very cynical, LosAngeles being one of them. Here there is great enthusiasm and support from thecrew, at municipal level and from people in the street.' Mark Johnson, producer, TheChronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe.
The Year Ahead
'The existence of the Film Fund and the scale of PeterJackson's ambition about what you can do in NZ has raised the scale ofambition in general. I hope that NZ can keep up this level of production, withboth new talent making feature debuts and experienced filmmakers continuing towork at home.' RuthHarley, New Zealand Film Commission chief executive.
'My worst fear is a change of government. Iwould like to see local producers access the 12.5% grants available to bigbudget films shooting here. It remains very difficult to get pre-sales or offshorepartners, especially for small films.'Trevor Haysom, producer.
Box office snapshot
Highest-grossing film: Shrek 2 (UIP) $7,757,608
Highest-grossing local film: In My Father's Den (Hoyts/Icon) $783,200
Highest-grossing arthouse film: Fahrenheit 9/11 (Hopscotch) $783,325