Topic: Entertainment

Wairoa Māori Film Festival celebrate 10th birthday anniversary

updated By Aroha Treacher
  • North Island: East Coast

The Wairoa Māori Film Festival has been going strong for a decade, this weekend celebrating its 10th birthday anniversary, a big deal for a small town.

It may not be your typical film festival setting, but that's just the way organisers like it.

Keeping the festival alive for the last decade has been a true labour of love from Leo Koziol, the original founder and his close family.

Leo Koziol says, “It's been a whānau effort to keep it going so it's really myself my closest whānau and a bunch of very supportive close friends that have helped out.”

For the last five years, the festival has been held at Kahungunu Marae in Nuhaka after the Gaiety Theatre in Wairoa closed down. But it's set to have a grand re-opening this weekend.

The upgraded theatre will feature the latest 9.3 raving sound system.

Eric Stark says, “This is the only system like this in New Zealand. It's actually the only system, like so far in the world because the next one that goes in is in Vietnam.”

This year it will be three days of short films as well as a feature length film from some talented up and coming native story tellers.