"Chasing Great" to hit NZ cinemas tomorrow

By Raniera Harrison
  • Auckland

All Blacks great, Richie McCaw will be removing himself from the public eye after the world premiere of his biopic movie, Chasing Great, in Auckland last night.

After 15 years in the public eye, one of the most decorated national sports personalities is signing off with a movie, which hits cinemas nationwide tomorrow.

As McCaw arrived at the world premiere of his new movie, Rotorua Boys High School welcomed him with a traditional pōwhiri.

McCaw says, “You don't have to come from a certain background to be an All Black or to chase your dreams and I wanted to try and inspire some kids with the story I had and show that my upbringing was just as normal as anyone else.”

"Chasing Great" opened in Auckland City last night. The 2000 seat Civic Theatre was filled to capacity. However, only one star captured all the attention.

Cass Avery says, “It's such a privilege and a complete career highlight. I'll probably never do something like this in my life and I won't forget that in a hurry.”

The film has a running time of 105 minutes, and documents the All Blacks' journey to back-to-back Rugby World Cup victories, in 2011 and 2015. McCaw is the only man in history to hoist the William Webb Ellis trophy twice.

He says, “Hopefully one day the kids get to see that then I could just show that it's not just stories. It actually did happen, and I got to play for the All Blacks.”

He played for the All Blacks 148 times to be exact. Since his debut in 2001, McCaw helped shape a generation of Māori and non-Māori All Blacks alike into the powerhouse that exists today. However, the film delves deeper into the essence of the man.

Avery says, “It's time. It’s about time and that wonderful thing of trust. Of being with him, and spending time with him. With Michelle the director, Michelle Walsh spent a lot of time and she’s filmed with Richie over a number of years.

Tomorrow, the movie hits cinemas around the country.

McCaw says, “Is this Richie McCaw's swansong? Is this the last that we are going to see of him? Is he going to get in his plane, fly away and we're never going to see him again? Well, probably need to. This is a lot bigger than I had ever imagined. So, you may not hear too much more from me for a while anyway.”

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