Short Film by Writer/Director Alexander McKenna. Produced with the assistance of the New Zealand Film Commission
Status: Festival submission - contact Producer Alex Clark with enquiries

A lonely, detached young man lives next to a family who are stuck in a violent relationship, the effects of which begin to take its toll on his consciousness.  

Production Notes

Shooting format: Arri Alexa 2K
Screening Format: HD, 1080P
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1  
Duration: 17 minutes  
Language: English  
Genre: Drama/ Thriller

(Available on request as 2K DCP, 5.1 Surround Sound)

Excerpt from CLEAVER

No Shame

Short Film by Writer/Director Brendan Donovan. 
Status: Festival submission - contact Producer Alex Clark with enquiries

When a vulnerable young man returns home, he's confronted by a history of violence with his father, and the searing memory of a lost friend; he takes dramatic action.

Production Notes

Shooting format: Arri Amira 2K
Screening Format: HD, 1080P
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1  
Duration: 11 minutes  
Language: English  
Genre: Drama

(Available on request as 2K DCP, 5.1 Surround Sound)

Trailer for No Shame - Short Film




Comedy Feature with Writer/Director Charlie Bleakley
Status: Script in Development with NZFC development funding 

A roadtrip buddy comedy set on New Zealand’s first manned mission to Mars, hauling primary produce in a secondhand Japanese spaceship.  From the idiots who brought you Coconut (NZIFF 2014).

It’s 2082, New Zealand has joined the space race and is doing what it does best: exporting fruit, meat and milk powder to the International Space Stations orbiting the Moon and Mars.  GEORGE ADAMS is the steadfast and sensible captain of NZSA flagship “The Moa”, a two man, secondhand Honda Galaxy. He’s the best of the best that Aotearoa has to offer and he’s frustrated that he may never actually set foot on the red planet, because the contract to land supplies at Mars base is sewn-up by NASA and the CNSA.  An added irritant is that on his next mission he’s been saddled with witless ANDY – winner of the ‘Passport to Space’ national lottery, thanks to his personal fortune rather than any actual promise as an astronaut.  But when an American cargo ship carrying vital supplies to the Martian miners explodes on final approach, the Moa’s routine mission to ISS2 is hastily amended, and the ship takes-off in a race against time – and against bitter rival ARSA of the Australian Republic.  If they can beat the Aussies they’ll save the day and win a lucrative Mars contract.  With the weight of the nation on his shoulders, the sheer bulk of the ARSA on his tail and the idiocy of ANDY threatening to ankle-tap the mission at every turn, GEORGE must safely pilot The Moa 60 million km in to the unknown.

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Everyone Dies

Fantasy/Adventure Feature with Writer/Director Dean Hewison
Status: Script in Development with NZFC development funding

A story-within-a-story, in which a reluctant babysitter tries to spook his little sister with a gruesome bedtime story of a young girl’s perilous quest, carrying her father’s living head in search of his fleeing body.

Everyone Dies is a darkly comic fantasy told by TANE, a 14 year old reluctant babysitter, to his 8 year old sister MIA in an attempt to scare her and get himself out of future babysitting.  In a tale borne of the tough time of his parents’ divorce two years earlier, TANE paints a picture of a young girl named LUCIA, raised by her father MARIUS after her mother was killed on suspicion of being a witch.  When MARIUS is beheaded in front of 13 year old LUCIA some latent magic in her saves his life – his severed head still lives even as his body stumbles off in search of something.  LUCIA scoops up her father’s head and gives chase, taking a fantastical adventure through a kingdom ruled by a cruel tyrant and stalked by witch-finder THE JUDGE.  LUCIA learns the truth about who her mother was, and how to fend for herself and her father, becoming more capable and independent with every passing day.  Their path leads them to the source of magic and a final confrontation that threatens to destroy all that LUCIA holds dear.  Back in the world of the storyteller, TANE’s tale has had the desired effect of frightening young MIA but the two have grown closer in its telling.  In the final denouement TANE must decide whether to throw away the script and spare some lives, or press-on with the grim promise of the story’s title. 



Family Drama Feature with Writer Gregory King and Director Louise Leitch
Status: Script in Development with NZFC development funding

A family drama film set against the stunning backdrop of New Zealand’s South Island, exploring themes of home and belonging through the dramatic story of a displaced 14 year old girl.

14 year old Australian SARAH is sent by her mother to live with relatives in New Zealand, after the death of her father in a farm accident.  Thrust in to the unfamiliar setting of the lush, green, cold, rural backblocks of Canterbury, in the care of her Nana RUTH on the farm that’s been in the family for 100 years, Sarah refuses to settle - acting-up at school and trying to run away back to Australia.  But when Sarah is instrumental in the rescue of former racehorse MOUNTAIN, the pair form an inseparable bond and begin to heal each other’s battered spirit.  With Mountain’s help Sarah begins to find her place to belong, here on the family farm.  But with debts mounting and the farm under threat of corporate takeover, Sarah defies her family to ride Mountain for the big prizemoney of the dangerous “Crazy Horse” cross country race.

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Tough Crowd

Comedy Feature with Writers Dean Hewison and Richard Falkner, Director Dean Hewison
Status: Script in Development with NZFC development funding

When an up-and-coming stand-up comedian lands a gig on a nationwide TV show that could make his career, he must fight his father's disappointment, his explosive nausea, and a murderous gang to get to the stage.

JOE LEE is guy in his mid-20’s with a secret. His heart really isn’t in to the safe (and lucrative) dentistry career that’s mapped out for him; he yearns to be on stage, getting acclaim and adulation as a stand-up comedian.  But he can’t bring himself to tell his taxi-driver dad XUAN, who is working double shifts to put Joe through dental school.  When Joe receives a last-minute call to fill a slot in a televised comedy gala, he chooses to seize this huge opportunity and skip-out on his dentistry final.  But after sneaking out of the theatre greenroom in search of anti-nausea drugs, he unwittingly foils a robbery perpetrated by a gang of meth cooks.  Fleeing with the pills and with the angry armed men in hot pursuit, Joe is in a race against the clock to escape the gang and get back to the theatre in time for his slot, so that sacrificing his dentistry career wasn’t for nothing.  In the ever-escalating mayhem that ensues, Joe does everything from taking refuge in a gay bar and escaping dressed as a flamingo, to leaping from the boot of a speeding Holden, to blowing up a meth-lab – earning him the attention of a reality TV crew who have stumbled upon the story, and of stage manager MEL who’s desperate to get him back to the gig before he gets them both killed, or worse – fired!


Big Business

Comedy Feature with Writer/Director Dean Hewison
Status: Script in Development with private development funding

An absurdist, non-verbal, physical-comedy built around three of the finest comedic talents in the theatre world.  Mr Bean meets The Artist on the 7 ½ floor of the office block from Being John Malkovich.

THOM, TRYGVE and GABY work for BIG BUSINESS LTD.  THOM is the record holder for most consecutive Employee of the Month awards.  He privately yearns to break free of the corporate yoke and follow his dream to become a story-teller – which he practices in his office by putting on finger-puppet shows.  His closest workmates are TRYGVE, an enthusiastic and rather clueless man who can’t help but imitate those around him (when he’s not doing bird impressions), and GABY, a disgruntled woman who has recently had her heart broken and has taken to pickpocketing candy from fellow employees.  When their boss is tragically killed in an absurd workplace accident on GABY’s birthday, it throws all of BIG BUSINESS LTD into disarray and uncertainty. Things look brighter, however, when it is revealed that BIG BUSINESS LTD has been acquired by the international corporation INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, with two new managers arriving to supervise the transition. But behind the polished smiles of the managers, INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION is not all is as it seems.


Sympathy for the Devil

Neo-Noir Drama Feature with Writer/Director Alexander McKenna
Status: Script in Development with NZFC development funding

When a young man washes-up dead in a desolate coastal town, his self-centred estranged mother must fight against apathy and hostility to uncover the truth, at the risk of exposing her own culpability.

SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL is a dark tale of moral ambiguity with a central theme of crime and punishment - of punitive justice and the innate desire within the collective consciousness to choose blood over truth and reconciliation.  Writer/director Alexander McKenna explores the responsibilities of society as a whole, along with the individuals that make up the collective through the core story of a mother, LYNDA, who must uncover the truth around his death of her son CALEB in the face of apathy and hostility of the people of the small town in which her son has been living, a community she is not a part of.  As her journey unfolds she’s forced to confront the fact that she doesn’t love her son (she may never have) and she must own her own part in creating a young man so reviled.