Roger‘s Peak

Roger Donaldson - Fenomena Filmproduction

Roger‘s Peak

Documentary about Roger Donaldson

Mike Medavoy, Bryan Brown, Annabella Sciorra, Lori Petty, Natasha Henstridge


Prologue: The booming, expanding film industry of New Zealand. Thanks to its handling of the current pandemic, the country is enjoying an unprecedented boom in film production, with directors and producers seeking safe conditions. And thanks to the foresight of New Zealand filmmakers, they used production to build one of the best, exemplary cinematic infrastructures in the world.


Main part: In 1978, the New Zealand Film Commission was founded. You, coming from Australia to New Zealand in 1965, were one of the founding members. What were your impressions concerning the country and its people. You started as a cinematographer and went to feature-film making. It was your first theatrical release, Sleeping Dogs, that brought New Zealand films to the attention of an international audience.

Clips from The Making of Sleeping Dogs. You were one of those who put New Zealand on the map. So you will be the best choice to introduce the history of New Zealand cinema from the 1970s till nowadays and host the whole show. You would be going to show the high-tech infrastructure set within a fantastic countryside of sheer beauty. You would talk about the movies you have made in New Zealand and abroad (pointing out the strong relationship with American producers and Hollywood) and meet colleagues from all filmic professions: producers, directors, writers, cinematographers, VFX artists and actors such as talking to Anthony Hopkins about The World’s Fastest Indian, to Kevin Costner, Natasha Henstrigde, Ben Kingsley or to Sam Neill (in particular), composer J. Peter Robinson, editor Conrad Buff IV et al. Peter Jackson might lead you and the audience through the miraculous world of his Weta Workshop in Wellington. Both of you talk about the past, present and future of filmmaking.

We already have interviewed, for instance, Mike Medavoy.

Sure, we have to talk about the various locations (including Hollywood) you might recommend before contacting actors’ agents and start the process of funding.

Epilogue: Should be devoted to the future of picture-making and to the fate of human society. Clips from Dante’s Peak: volcanic eruption, climate change, overpopulation. Which part do you take as a filmmaker in a society facing this kind of challenges in a turn of eras? New technologies, streaming, transmedia and interactive content and so on, will create a parallel world of images. This is going to speculate about a Brave New World.

Roger Donaldson Zoom