$15M for New and Returning Kiwi Dramas

Several years of flat-lining NZ dramas in primetime haven’t stopped NZ On Air from breathing new life — and about $15 million — into the risky genre both on-air and online.

It’s commissioned four new dramas and renewed three more, including Prime’s The Brokenwood Mysteries for a fifth season.

They include a black comedy, a psychological thriller, one that will be produced and directed by women, and another starring a transgender lead.

TVNZ 2’s Fresh Eggs is a black comedy collaboration between Nick Ward (Stickmen) and Kim Harrop (Go Girls) about two city slickers whose quest for the “good life” in the country turns out to be rife with small-town intrigue and mayhem.

TVNZ 1’s The Bad Seed concerns a high-flying suspect for murder who must fight the country’s most powerful politician to clear his name and keep his daughter.

Screenwriter Sarah Kate-Lynch is adapting two novels by Charlotte Grimshaw, and women will produce and direct the series,

New for an online audience will be Alibi, an interactive drama series that uses multiple platforms for storytelling including TVNZ On Demand, YouTube, Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram.

Each of the six episodes will be told from the perspective of a different suspect in a murder case and they are designed to be watched in any order.

At My Most Beautiful, a drama webseries to feature on WatchME, follows a transgender activist’s return to his rural hometown after the sudden death of his partner, where he’s swept up in a vicious political fight about sustainable dairy farming.

In comedy, Millen Baird is back as the hapless Darryl in Darryl, A Coast To Coast Story, and there’ll be a new series of clever sketches from a Māori perspective in Only In Aotearoa 2.

“These projects each serve different audiences, cover a range of genre, will be found on a variety of platforms, and in many cases bring through new creative talents,” NZ On Air CEO Jane Wrightson says.

“We are excited by their potential and also delighted to support the return of three successful projects.”

“We will continue to invest in the best quality ideas to reach diverse audiences. We, and the sector, are working hard to bring forward new ideas NZ audiences will enjoy. And importantly, with these projects, we are encouraging women in lead creative roles.”

  • The Bad Seed: 5 x 44 mins, Jump Film & Television with South Pacific Pictures for TVNZ 1, up to $5,586,890
  • Fresh Eggs: 6 x 45 mins, Warner Bros NZ for TVNZ 2, up to $4,385,309
  • The Brokenwood Mysteries 5: 4 x 90 mins, South Pacific Pictures for Prime, up to $3,636,000
  • Darryl, A Coast To Coast Story: 9 x 8 mins, Brown Sugar Apple Grunt Productions for TVNZ On Demand, up to $472,500
  • Only In Aotearoa 2: 8 x 30mins, Kura Productions for Māori Television, up to $400,000
  • At My Most Beautiful: 6 x 10 mins, NZME for WatchME, up to $295,523
  • Alibi: 6 x 10 mins, PLUS6FOUR Entertainment for TVNZ On Demand, up to $143,460
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One Response to “$15M for New and Returning Kiwi Dramas”

  1. I find most of NZ made content is not enjoyable. I’ll stick to USA made content any day of the week.

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