Moas award haul speaks volumes for The Orator

Movie about bullied dwarf in Samoan village scoops eight.

Most of the actors on  The Orator  were non-professionals. Photo / Supplied
Most of the actors on The Orator were non-professionals. Photo / Supplied

Samoan-New Zealand movie The Orator has dominated the inaugural Sorta Unofficial New Zealand Film Awards taking away eight trophies - or "Moas" - from its 11 nominations.

The film equalled Two Little Boys in the number of categories it was a finalist in. But The Orator left its nearest competition taking away just two awards at the ceremony held in Auckland last night.

As well as best film, The Orator won its writer-director Tusi Tamasese the screenplay and directing prizes. Its cast also took away best actor, actress and supporting actress Moas, and the film also won sound and costume design. Most of the actors on the film - about a bullied dwarf in an isolated Samoan village standing up for himself and family - were non-professionals while it's Tamasese's debut feature.

Other winners included rock-documentary Shihad: Beautiful Machine (best doco director and editing), and drama The Most Fun You Can Have Dying (soundtrack, cinematography and production design).

The awards, organised by Hugh Sundae of nzherald.co.nz and Ant Timpson and presented by the New Zealand Herald and Rialto Channel, were put in place after the national television awards dropped the film categories from its annual prize-giving.

The awards were judged by a panel of overseas film-makers, festival programmers and journalists.

The winners

Best film
The Orator

Best Self-Funded Film
The Red House

Best Director
The Orator - Tusi Tamasese

Best Cinematography
The Most Fun You Can Have Dying - Crighton Bone

Best Editing
Two Little Boys - Annie Collins

Best Actor
The Orator - Fa'afiaula Sagote

Best Actress
The Orator - Tausili Pushparaj

Best Supporting Actor
Netherwood - Will Hall

Best Supporting Actress
The Orator - Salamasina Mataia

Best Screenplay
The Orator - Tusi Tamasese

Best Score
The Most Fun You Can Have Dying - Grayson Gilmour

Best Production Design
The Most Fun You Can Have Dying - Bruce Everard

Best Makeup Design
The Devil's Rock - Davina Lamont, Sean Foot and Richard Taylor

Best Sound
The Orator - Tim Prebble, Chris Todd, Richard Flynn, Mike Hedges and Gilbert Lake

Best Costume Design
The Orator - Kirsty Cameron

Best Visual Effects
Two Little Boys - Jon Baxter and Puck Murphy

Best Short Film
Honk If You're Horny

Best Short Film Actor
Honk If You're Horny - Andy Anderson

Best Short Film Actress
Whakatiki - Mabelle Dennison

Best Documentary
Maori Boy Genius

Best Documentary Director
Shihad: Beautiful Machine - Sam Peacocke

Best Documentary Cinematography
How Far is Heaven - Christopher Pryor

Best Documentary Editing
Shihad: Beautiful Machine - Cushla Dillon

Best Self-Funded Short Film
In Safe Hands

Best Short Film Cinematography
I'm the One - Bonnie Elliott

Best Short Film Script
Honk If You're Horny - Joe Lonie

- NZ Herald

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