Award-winning film and TV writer and director Michael Bennett is this year's recipient of Te Tumu Whakaata Taonga New Zealand Film Commission's Te Aupounamu Māori Screen Excellence award.
Michael is perhaps best known for his 2018 feature film In Dark Places, about the wrongful conviction of Teina Pora. His most recent work is with Ant Sang on graphic novel Helen and the Go-Go Ninjas.
Michael's passion is telling stories about Māori characters and issues important to Māori communities, and has helped mentor young Northland rangatahi to film making success.
He tells Kathryn Ryan his work with Teina Pora is possibly the most important in his life.