|Title||Cross-Cultural Filmmaking in New Zealand National Cinema|
This thesis argues that the processes and resulting products of cross-cultural creative collaboration and financial partnerships in fiction filmmaking affect both the output and the very notion of New Zealand national cinema. Although the culture of commercialism in transnational financial partnerships is volatile and, therefore, the degree to which authorial control and cultural ‘veracity’ are compromised remains unpredictable, a great deal of intra-national cross-cultural collaboration in the creative processes of filmmaking is being undertaken with high levels of mutual respect and considerable awareness of both what differentiates and what connects peoples from different cultures. At a grass roots level, substantial goodwill is being generated by dialogic models of cross-cultural collaboration that provide exemplars for both the film industry and other spheres of cultural and national activity.
While the speed and degree to which perspectives formed on the nation’s cultural peripheries are welcomed into ‘mainstream’ cinematic projections remain unsatisfactory, progress is being made. Much contemporary cross-cultural filmmaking is characterised by the bending and democratisation of traditional production cultures, resulting in higher levels of multiple authorship than is the norm, and the creation of new types of aesthetically hybridised films that bear the marks of their cross-cultural origins. The parameters of ‘mainstream’ national cinema in Aotearoa New Zealand are thus broadened by a burgeoning cinema that operates beyond damaging stereotypes, combines naturalistic and symbolic registers in new ways, makes visible and allows identification with the nation’s under-represented minority communities and, in doing so, inscribes a permanent place for these peoples in the national imaginary.
By foregrounding the creative processes and attitudes of filmmakers and their collaborators, this thesis contributes to a growing body of work that re-appropriates and elevates authorial process and intent for a consideration of ‘the national’ in cinema and, in doing so, reveals the practicality of hoping that the cross-cultural creative collaborations increasingly producing mainstream culture indicate the evolution of a genuinely more inclusive and plural concept of New Zealand national identity.
|Keywords||cross-cultural filmmaking, transnational film funding, national cinema, New Zealand film, dialogism,|