Wānaka Sun       

Mountain Film and Book Festival invites entries

Posted at 6:00am Thursday 07 Jan, 2021 | By Pat Deavoll editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

Entries are now open for the nineteenth NZ Mountain Film and Book Festival according to Festival director Mark Sedon of Lake Hawea.

The Festival was severely curtailed in 2020 due to Covid-19, but was one of New Zealand's first events to return to a live format.*

“The unusual nature of 2020 stimulated a flurry of New Zealand-made films. People spent their lockdown making films and these highlighted the underground talent in the Kiwi filmmaking community. The Festivals Charitable Trust recognises the opportunity to support the development of Kiwi adventure filmmaking, and to encourage new entries it has more than doubled the prize money for the Best NZ Made Film to $2,500 for 2021.”

Sedon said, “Doubling the prize money aims to encourage more budding filmmakers out of the woodwork.

“The Pure NZ segment of our programme is one of our most popular and fastest-selling shows. The audience loves the New Zealand-made films and we expect there will be some creative submissions this year given the circumstances. The Book Competition first-place prize money has also increased to $1,000 with a bequest from Dave Bamford and John Nankervis.”

The NZ Mountain Film and Book Festival tours nationally in smaller cinemas throughout the country. Hosts in the regions choose a programme that reflects the interests of their local audiences from a selection of films on adventure, culture, environment and action sports.

Some of the income from the National Tour goes towards the festival Grant Scheme to fund youth in adventure skills training, support local environmental projects and help individuals with disabilities into the outdoors. The Trust awarded funds to four different groups last year including Kahu Youth (to support the Youth Vs Wild outdoor survival programme) and MINT, (an organisation supporting youth with intellectual disabilities in the Upper Clutha Region.)

The NZ Mountain Film and Book Festival will run in Wānaka June 25 to 29 and in Queenstown July 1 to 3, 2021. The event will also be broadcast online nationally from June 25 until July 25, 2021.

*This article has been amended since publication.

Read edition 1008 of the Wānaka Sun here.

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