Meet: The Production Team - This Is Us

From This Is Us, 12:00 pm on 25 August 2020
Crew shot outside the  Al-Masjid Al-Jamie Mosque - Left to Right, Director Ghazaleh Golbakhsh, Producer Gemma Duncan, Director of Photography Kelly Chen, 1st Assistant Camera Nahyeon Lee, Production Assistant Sara Shirazi, Sound Recordist Debra Frame.

Crew shot outside the Al-Masjid Al-Jamie Mosque - Left to Right, Director Ghazaleh Golbakhsh, Producer Gemma Duncan, Director of Photography Kelly Chen, 1st Assistant Camera Nahyeon Lee, Production Assistant Sara Shirazi, Sound Recordist Debra Frame. Photo: Photography by Ainsley Duyvestyn-Smith | @ds_documentary

Ghazaleh Golbakhsh, Director

Ghazaleh Golbakhsh, Director Photo: Photography by Sascha Stejko

Director: Ghazaleh Golbakhsh

Series Director Ghazaleh Golbakhsh is an Iranian-New Zealand writer, filmmaker and Fulbright scholar who is currently undertaking her PhD in Media and Communications. 

She has written and directed award winning short films.  Ghazaleh is currently developing her first feature screenplay and publishing her first book of personal essays.

Producer: Gemma Duncan

Involved predominantly in documentary, Gemma has worked in both creative editorial and production roles for the past eight years, both in New Zealand and London.

Gemma Duncan, Producer

Gemma Duncan, Producer Photo: Disorient Pictures

Career highlights are directing the New Zealand Film Commission short documentary, Meet Peter (Special Mention, Documentary Edge Festival 2017), and working within the core production team for the BAFTA award-winning broadcast of World War One Remembered: Passchendaele.  Other work includes production on Blind Date UK, with Graham Norton’s company SO TV, and the Lexus LC500 - Make Your Mark campaign with music producer Mark Ronson in Ibiza.  Gemma’s long-term goal as a creative producer is bringing to life character-driven stories with a polished vision. 

Executive Producer: Shuchi Kothari

Shuchi Kothari, is a critically acclaimed filmmaker (Firaaq, Apron Strings, Coffee & Allah, Shit One Carries) and academic (University of Auckland).  As a writer and producer her films have screened in more than one hundred film festivals including Venice, Cannes, Toronto and Telluride.

Her Indian feature film Firaaq (dir. Nandita Das) was based on the genocide of Muslims in Gujarat in 2002.  Coffee & Allah (dir. Sima Urale) was inspired by her sister-in-law’s fear of being “visible" in a hijab after the 2005 London train bombing.  Shuchi’s creative work consistently focuses on issues of inclusion, exclusion, home, belonging, cultural hegemony and personal resistance.

She co-founded the Pan-Asian Screen Collective in 2018 to advocate for more equitable access to means of production and for increased Pan-Asian representation on and behind the screen in New Zealand.

Director of Photography: Kelly Chen

Kelly Chen is an emerging cinematographer in New Zealand.  Since finishing her Screen Arts degree at Unitec specialising in camera at the end of 2011, she has been a camera assistant, operator and Director of Photography.  As an immigrant from Taiwan from a young age, she loves being involved with multicultural productions and stories that represent different voices from different nationalities.

Some of her work involves an award winning short film, Promise of Piha, a NZ/Tongan story directed by Hanelle Harris; East meets East, a short documentary for Loading Docs directed by Julie Hsu about Chinese grandparents in NZ; the Friday Night Bites web-series directed by Roseanne Liang, where Kelly was awarded Bronze for the cinematography of Ep.4 of season 2 by the NZ Cinematographers Society; Baby Mama’s Club seasons 1 and 2, a Maori and pacific islander series directed by Hanelle Harris, where season 1 was awarded best web series by TVNZ in 2017.  Over the last year she has been operating and shooting for NZME and The Spinoff for various promotional and documentary content.

Editor: Amie Bentall

Amie has edited prime time obs' doc shows Dog Squad, Dog Squad Puppy School, and Border Patrol for Greenstone TV.  She was the EPK editor on feature film The Breaker Upperers, and has worked on a range of reality television shows, including Dancing with the Stars, MKR, Generation What, and The Block.  Most recently she created the kids series Young Riders for Heihei, which is currently in production on a second series.

Tima Alhaddad, Lara Khayyat and Aliya Alhaddad with the entire crew filming Tima on Milford Beach.

Tima Alhaddad, Lara Khayyat and Aliya Alhaddad with the entire crew filming Tima on Milford Beach. Photo: Photography by Ainsley Duyvestyn-Smith | @ds_documentary

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