Winners of inaugural Rangatahi Film Fund announced

Doc Edge and Rei Foundation are pleased to announce the inaugural projects selected to receive a Rangatahi Film Fund grant.

“This talented group of filmmakers has taken up the challenge to make films for our rangatahi,” says Doc Edge Executive Director, Dan Shanan. “As an Academy Award-qualifying festival, we look forward to the completed films competing at the highest levels”.

The Doc Edge Rei Foundation Rangatahi Film Fund was set up to provide grants to filmmakers and support the production of short films for audiences 11-17 years of age, to give them an opportunity to watch and discuss topics that are particularly relevant and important to them.

Reiko Fukutake, Executive Director of Rei Foundation says “By viewing documentaries tailored specifically for their age group, we hope that today’s rangatahi will be able to experience stories and new perspectives that will help to broaden their worldview, further develop their empathy and open-mindedness, and become responsible members of the global community.”

The chosen projects will each receive NZ$20,000 and when completed, will première at the Doc Edge International Documentary Film Festival.

“There are plenty of recent music films about Kiwi men – Six60, The Chills, Shihad… however, there is not one woman represented on-screen or the stage in any of the aforementioned.”

— Morgan Albrecht, director of Girls Rock! Aotearoa

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Girls Rock! Aotearoa

Directed by Morgan Albrecht (pictured, left) and produced by Morgan Leigh Stewart.

The film follows the all-girl rock band, Socially Awkward (aged 13-15) and their trials and tribulations, attending the annual Girls Rock! Camp, Aotearoa. The camp is created and run by female industry professionals like Bic Runga and Julia Deans, who want to change the power balance in the industry.

Albrecht says “There are plenty of recent music films about Kiwi men – Six60, The Chills, Shihad… however, there is not one woman represented on-screen or the stage in any of the aforementioned.”

“Girls Rock! Aotearoa is particularly exciting – it’s a gift really, for documentary purposes, established artists to interview and follow in their fostering of a younger generation”.

Morgan Albrecht is most proud of her recent piece, Coco, for RNZ’s Wireless Docs, about Auckland mother Jo Galvin-Martinengo’s daughter who was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome.


Directed by James Muir and produced by James Muir and Alison Titulaer.

The seas are rising and so are we. TLC reveals the world of two key women leading the climate change movement in Aotearoa.

Veteran campaigner Sarah Roberts is Aotearoa's Erin Brockovich. She has fought to expose the realities of the fossil fuel industry in Aotearoa New Zealand. One drilling rig is next to a school, its flares burning into the night.

For 18-year-old Sophie Handford, climate change are personal, with her seaside family home being eaten by waves. But Handford sees the greater picture as well, and her passion for protecting the natural world drives her to give up university and instead focus on the need for change and the politics of peace.

Award-winning director James Muir says “We are all driven by survival, but to be a voice for survival takes courage and commitment. This is an essential story for young people to find hope and inspiration, for a way forward in an otherwise uncertain future.”


Directed by Jess Feast and produced by Ruth Korver for Storybox Ltd (with help from Victoria University MFA student, Matilda Boese-Wong).

In the lead up to the largest planned climate strike in the world, the filmmakers are behind the scenes with the group charged with bringing as many people to the streets as possible.

Jess Feast’s independent features Gardening with Soul (2013)and Cowboys & Communists (2007) won awards at international festivals. She has made primetime documentaries and series (The Gravy, Rock Quest, Black on Red, Gather Round). She has just completed the five-part series He Kōrero Taumaha Tonu – Māori and the Criminal Justice System, and is in pre-production on Shot Bro both co-productions of New Zealand on Air, Māori Television and The Spinoff.

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Water Stories

Directed by Aliscia Young and produced by Richard Sidey.

Aliscia Young is an international award-winning filmmaker and photographer based in Wanaka, New Zealand. She is a co-founder of New Zealand production company Galaxiid. She directed the short film The Breath Connection about free-diver Kathryn Nevatt, New Zealand record holder and former world champion.

Young wants to “create a visually spectacular, poetic and poignant short documentary film that connects with our youth as well as being inclusive of older generations”.

Water Stories will focus on the people of New Zealand and their individual connections to our unique rivers, lakes and oceans.

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