The NZ Herald and editor-at-large Shayne Currie are on a two-week road trip to gauge the mood of the nation and meet everyday and notable Kiwis making a difference in their communities and the wider world. Today he meets Sir Richard Taylor at Weta Workshop for a rare interview and unique insight into one of our greatest creative minds; we have Nine Questions With... Lucy Lawless (below); and we also catch up with Whanganui author Airini Beautrais.
What’s the one word to sum up your mood right now?
Focused. (Focused on what I can control.)
What do you wish people knew about where you live?
That Aucklanders care more about the rest of the country than the rest of the country knows. Auckland locked down faster and harder than anywhere else. We understood that our airport was the international gateway and that our regional hospitals would be overwhelmed if we didn’t take one for the team.
What are your passions?
I love farm life, my tractor and my pruning shears. I’m planting trees and it’s a lot of work. You really have to nurse them for the first few years. I have started learning the fundamentals of carpentry with a group of women. We can’t afford to wait for craftsmen to become available to fix things for us. Sisters are doing it for themselves!
Which New Zealander (alive or dead) do you most admire - and why?
I am making a film about Australasia’s first camerawoman, Margaret Moth. Raised in Whanganui, she went to cover the Gulf War for CNN. She suffered unimaginable hardships but was a wild and sexy character and she proves that you don’t have to be a saint to be on the side of the angels.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
I think it would include grandchildren and a pony on a break between jobs. (I love my work.)
What is your greatest fear?
Too many hawks, not enough doves.
What is it that you most dislike?
Bad mothers (usually on TV).
What is on your bucket list?
Building an Earthship.
What do you hope/think NZ will look like in 10 years?
Sparkling clean rivers and an absolute ban on bottom trawling in our seas.
Shayne Currie is travelling the country on the NZ Herald’s Great New Zealand Road Trip. Read the full series here.