13 Sep 2011

Festival special mention of Samoan/NZ film puts Pacific on map - associate producer

1:29 pm on 13 September 2011

An associate producer of a Samoan/New Zealand movie chosen to compete at one of the world's most prestigious film festivals says it is putting the Pacific region on the map.

O Le Tulafale or The Orator, which was written and directed by Tusi Tamasese, has gained a special mention and has won two awards in the Orizzonti or New Horizons section of the 68th Venice International Film Festival.

One of the film's associate producers, Wellington-based actor and tutor, Nathaniel Lees, says the film has aroused interest in the Pacific.

"It's not just Samoa. It is about the Pacific. I mean we're specifically a Samoan story but the fact that it's from the Pacific is of a great deal of interest I think, certainly to the European audience, and American audience if they get to see it."

Nathaniel Lees says he believes gaining a special mention puts it in the top five films that played at the festival.