Ngā Pakiaka Incubator Programme films selected to screen at imagineNATIVE Film Festival in Toronto

The talents of rangatahi filmmakers are to be shown on the big screen in Toronto, Canada next month with the selection of FOUR short films by young Māori filmmakers, part of a talent incubator by Māoriland Productions.

The Ngā Pakiaka Incubator Programme developed eight rangatahi writer/directors from across Aotearoa to work with professional directors of photography to create eight short films.

Led by Māoriland Productions with support from the New Zealand Film Commission, Sundance Institute’s Respond and Reimagine Plan, Department of Post and over 700 Boosted supporters the eight films (under the programme name He Waiora) had their world premiere at the ninth Māoriland Film Festival in July and received critical acclaim by the audience including seasoned filmmakers.

The He Waiora programme is now being considered by festivals around the world with ImagineNATIVE, Canada’s international Indigenous film festival being the first it was submitted to.

Oriwa and Matilda on set of 'E Rangi Rā'
Oriwa and Matilda on set of ‘E Rangi Rā’
On set of 'The Voyager's Legacy'
On set of ‘The Voyager’s Legacy’

The films were produced by Libby Hakaraia, Matilda Poasa and Maddy Hakaraia de Young for Māoriland Productions.

“The unique difference with NPIP is that each of the rangatahi filmmakers worked as a collective to develop each others films and then took on different roles as the crew of each film” said Libby Hakaraia.

‘He Waiora’ meaning a reflection of life is the theme of this collection of films. Each story is ambitious and a celebration of the types of stories that can be explored when young people are given the freedom and support to create. 

The four films selected for ImagineNATIVE are:

  • The Voyager’s Legacy, written and directed by Bailey Poching
  • E Rangi Rā, written and directed by Tioreore Ngatai-Melbourne
  •  Manu Masters, written and directed by Te Waiarangi Ratana
  • The Politics of Toheroa Soup, created by Tiana Trego-Hall
NPIP Website Images8
NPIP Website Images
NPIP Website Images2
NPIP Website Images6

They join over 147 works from 16 countries in over 55 Indigenous languages to be screened at the prestigious film festival in-person and online this October. 

The filmmakers will be traveling to Toronto to present their films.

E Rangi Rā is the debut film as writer and director of actor Tioreore Ngatai Melbourne. The film recalls the invasion of Ngāpuhi on Te Whānau a Hinerupe in the early 1800s. Tioreore will be familiar to audiences for her break-out role in Taika Waititi’s, Hunt For The Wilderpeople and recent features, Cousins and Whina

Tioreore also stars in We Are Still Here, which premiered as the opening night film at Sydney Film Festival and will also screen at imagineNATIVE 2022.

Set during the Dawn Raids, Bailey Poching’s The Voyagers Legacy follows the children of a Samoan family, as they reimagine their bustling Ponsonby home as a whimsical fairytale world of swords and sorcery. 

In this fantastical retelling, Bailey couples true events with magical realism to captivate the audience. Bailey is also a working comedian, set to star in upcoming comedy special, “The Comedy Mixtape with Pax Assadi.” 

Manu Masters is the New Zealand summer film we’ve all been waiting for. 

Written and directed by Te Waiarangi Ratana, the film centres on awkward teen Manu who, unfortunately for him, can’t do a bomb. The film includes all the usual features of teen movies – the bully, the girl, the best friend and the master – and leaves you wanting more. Te Waiarangi is currently working on bringing it to reality – with the Manu Masters series in development.

The Politics of Toheroa Soup is a short documentary, about the depletion of the toheroa, the Foreshore Resource Management act and the impacts on one west coast Northland Māori whānau. Originally an academic paper, written by Tiana Pewhairangi Trego-Hall, Lucy Te Awhitu and Alayne Mikahere-Hall, the film celebrates the life’s work of kaumatua James Te Tuhi in his effort to revitalise the toheroa. 

The full list of NPIP films in the He Waiora programme are below:

  • The Retrieval, written by Matilda Poasa and directed by Aree Kapa
  • The Voyager’s Legacy, written and directed by Bailey Poching
  • Ngā Riwha a Tama, written and directed by Keeti Ngatai-Melbourne
  • E Rangi Rā, written and directed by Tioreore Ngatai-Melbourne 
  • Street Lights, written and directed by Te Mahara Tamehana 
  • Manu Masters, written and directed by Te Waiarangi Ratana 
  • The Politics of Toheroa Soup, created by Tiana Trego-Hall
  • Ruarangi, written and directed by Oriwa Hakaraia 

In October,  screenings of He Waiora will be held across New Zealand. Four titles have also been selected to screen at RIFF – Rotorua International Indigenous Film Festival.

“It’s a hugely exciting time for our young Māori filmmakers,” said Ngā Pakiaka Incubator Programme Producer, Maddy Hakaraia de Young.   “They have shown the power of collective filmmaking and grown their skills as storytellers together.

‘HE WAIORA’ Rangatahi Film

Showcase Tour

The Roxy Cinema


October 6, 6pm


 Details to come:

Tāmaki Makaurau


Te Araroa

Te Kao


For interviews or inquiries, contact:

Madeleine Hakaraia de Young