Cliff Curtis of Ngāti Hauiti, Te Arawa has won the Te Waipuna-a-Rangi award for Arts and Entertainment at the 2016 Matariki Awards tonight.
Curtis has had an enduring hugely successful acting career which has seen him on stage, television and blockbuster feature films.
His first feature film role was a small part in the Oscar-nominated Jane Campion film ‘The Piano’. He went on to win attention in ‘Once Were Warriors’, one of the most successful films released on New Zealand soil. He also played a seducer in the melodrama ‘Desperate Remedies’. In 2000 Curtis starred as family man Billy Williams in ‘Jubilee’, before playing father to the title character in the international hit ‘Whale Rider’.
In 2014, Curtis played the lead role in the award winning film ‘The Dark Horse’. He has appeared in films such as ‘Three Kings’, the Johnny Depp drug drama ‘Blow’, Martin Scorsese's ‘Bringing Out the Dead’, ‘Sunshine’ and Live Free or Die Hard in 2007, ‘Training Day’, ‘Collateral Damage’, and ‘Push’ in 2009.