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LOADING DOCS is excited to be once again seeking proposals from New Zealand filmmakers for creative and original 3-minute documentary shorts to be made in 2017.

The theme of DIVERSITY will unite the 2017 collection of documentaries.

Since launching in 2014, Loading Docs has established itself as a leading platform for the distribution of high quality short documentary boasting 1.8 million views for the 29 documentaries created to date.

Every year Loading Docs asks filmmakers to explore a theme such as home (2014), connection (2015) and change (2016). 2017’s theme is diversity. It’s a theme that touches many aspects of life, from politics, identity, science, religion to the environment.

Diversity can be cause for celebration, support innovation and enhance creativity. Diversity can also be challenging, complex and confronting.

We hope to have a range of filmmakers who are as diverse as the range of stories they will tell. In particular we are seeking proposals that speak to Māori, Pasifika and Asian points of view. There is also provision for a documentary fully in te reo Māori to complete the collection.

Telling a compelling 3-minute story is a test of creativity, skill and ingenuity. Now it’s the turn of a new crop of filmmakers to be part of a movement that is transforming the way we make, tell and view documentary shorts in Aotearoa.

Loading Docs is proud to announce that Te Māngai Pāho will join NZ On Air and the New Zealand Film Commission as a funding partner for this fourth iteration of the initiative. The documentaries will once again feature on TVNZ On Demand and loadingdocs.net with subsequent plays on Māori Television.

“We look forward to working with our partners to create ten new short documentaries that captivate and inspire audiences, reaching them across multiple platforms locally and internationally, while developing and promoting New Zealand filmmaking talent and exploring new models for film funding, production and distribution.”
Julia Parnell, Executive Producer.

Watch our call out teaser here.

10 documentaries will be selected with each team receiving extensive support and opportunities for growth:

  • Professional development opportunities including workshops on story and creative treatment, outreach and distribution strategies and will receive hands on support from Loading Docs executive producers, to ensure their short reaches the widest possible audience.
  • $2,000 production funding, and an additional $2,000 matched funding to support a crowdfunding campaign (we’ll match each dollar your raise through crowdfunding up to $2,000).
  • A colour grade and sound-mix from Toybox and Sale Street Studios. Making a total budget of over $7,000 for each 3-minute documentary.

This is an opportunity for the best filmmaking voices in New Zealand to take up the challenge and be part of this cutting edge short documentary initiative.

For more information about Loading Docs and to watch the documentaries produced in 2014, 2015 and 2016, visit www.loadingdocs.net/shorts

Important dates

  • 19 October 2016 – Request for proposals issued.
  • 21 November 2016 – Deadline for proposals. (5pm)
  • 28 November 2016 – Short list notified – full proposals requested.
  • 19 December 2016 – Deadline for full proposals.
  • 20 January 2017 – Successful applicants notified.

Visit www.loadingdocs.net/submit to submit a proposal.

SEND YOUR SUBMISSIONS TO: submissions@loadingdocs.net
no later than 5pm Monday 21st of November 2016.


Nia Phipps – Producer/Project Manager
Ph. 021 1577 075

Twitter: www.twitter.com/loadingdocs
Facebook: www.facebook.com/loadingdocs 


Loading Docs is funded by NZ On Air
and made with the support of the New Zealand Film Commission and Te Māngai Pāho.


Blood Sugar from Loading Docs on Vimeo.

Directed by Joe Hitchcock and produced by Morgan Leigh Stewart, the short doc Blood Sugar captures the unique point of view of New Zealand preschooler Dahlia and what it’s like to live with the lesser-known Type 1 diabetes. Despite the “bum pricks” — her term for insulin shots — and the constant monitoring of blood sugar, she is a typical child. She reminds us when saying, “When you die, you don’t do anything; when you’re alive, you play.” The 3-minute film deftly captures the gravity of chronic illness set against the whimsical backdrop of childhood as we see Type 1 through Dahlia’s lens — on a swing made of rope with a butterfly band around her head, or at the beach with a stick for a shovel.

Watch 24 Hours with Anna and Sam another documentary on a chid living with Type 1 diabetes.

via Beyond Type 1

Cook Islands film-maker, Robert George, focuses on tātatau in new short film

Robert is of Ngāti Kuki Airani (Rarotonga & Atiu), Te Arawa and Ngāti Awa heritage; he lives and works in Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand.  Robert was schooled in Rotorua, Wellington and Rarotonga.  He is a video artist, writer, film-maker and painter, his work has been shown in New Zealand, the Cook Islands, Australia, France and Canada.


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Did you know that the kumara came dangerously close to extinction? As this micro-documentary from Felicity Morgan-Rhind explains, we owe a great debt to Chinese couple Mr. and Mrs. Gock and their love of the kumara.

How Mr and Mrs Gock Saved the Kumara from Loading Docs on Vimeo.

We’ll be featuring more Loading Docs 2016 titles in the coming days. Funded by NZ On Air with support of The New Zealand Film Commission.

Loading Docs: New Zealand documentaries cut to the chase

Stuff+logoAll around us, fellow New Zealanders are telling stories. In books and films, on TV, via social media, on the phone, beside you on the bus – there’s no end of incessant yapping via every channel available.We live in a world drenched with narrative, much of it confusing, contradictory, scary, unintentionally hilarious. Hot air, blather, loose-lipped jabbering –  this is the backdrop to our lives, and there’s no escaping the fact that many of the tales we tell each other are puffed up with unnecessary padding.

Where are the stories that cut to the chase? How can an impatient soul like me – a man who favours the short story over every other literary artform – find fresh and moving new narratives I can dip into in less time than it takes to brew a good cup of tea?

Read more

Doco reveals transition’s impact on a friendship


A new short documentary tells the story of two friends in their 50s who are in the process of redefining their friendship after one of them comes out as transgender.

At three and a half minutes long, Same but Different captures a moment of honest contemplation.Friends with Neil for 25 years, Byron has recently come out as trans and the new documentary Same but Different explores the impact her transition is having on the pairs friendship.

The short film is part of local filmmaking initiative Loading Docs and is directed by Neil’s wife Louise Leitch.

Loading Docs selects ten short documentary proposals that are then mentored through from development to distribution.

Watch Same but Different over on the Loading Docs website.

via Gay NZ

By local, for local: Loading Docs launches a new collection of documentary shorts

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 10.42.27 amFor the third year running, documentary platform Loading Docs is celebrating local filmmaking talent by launching a new series of shorts to captivate and challenge the audience to see local stories in new ways.

Loading Docs is a documentary initiative establishment in 2014 to captivate and inspire audiences as well as develop and promote New Zealand filmmaking talent with the support of NZ On Air’s Digital Media Fund and the New Zealand Film Commission. Through a competitive selection process, it selects ten short documentary proposals to create three-minute shorts, which are then supported from development through to distribution. Working with local and international mentors, Loading Docs filmmakers expand their skills in a range of areas including story development, outreach, publicity and marketing and distribution.

The 2016 collection explores the theme of ‘change’, sharing such diverse stories as; coming to grips with a life-threatening disease, a personal epiphany leading to a dramatic lifestyle change, a gender reassignment challenging two best friends and a hotly debated political issue, these shorts all have the potential to change the way we think and feel about the world around us.​

Read more


Loading Docs
Academy Cinemas, Auckland, NZ
August 4, 2016

Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Reviewed by NIDHA KHAN

Every day I am more and more amazed by the people of Aotearoa; their level of talent, artistic expression, and just their sheer desire to inject more good into this world.

And last night was no different.

Thanks to TEARAWAY, I had the privilege of attending the world premiere of Loading Docs.

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Miracle: Here are 10 local documentaries you can watch in 30 minutes

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 10.18.43 amAlex Casey snacks on this year’s Loading Docs selection, ten locally-made documentaries under 3 minutes in length.

Love documentaries but hate all the sitting, watching and listening? Destined to take 100 pee breaks and snack stops during the average 90 minute runtime? Fear not my fellow cinema pests, Loading Docs is the perfect solution if your love for factual content is only outweighed by your piddly attention span.

Founded by Julia Parnell and Anna Jackson, the NZ On Air funded initiative produces a selection of 3 minute documentaries that aim to showcase local stories and promote our brightest new filmmakers. The theme for this year’s crop is ‘change’, presenting true stories of transformation, growth, adversity and hope. I binged them all in an easy breezy half hour to assemble this handy, one-sentence guide. Snack away.

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Watch three of the films from this year’s Loading Docs

nz-herald-logoLoading Docs: A short film initiative which has seen 10 Kiwi filmmakers submit their own three-minute long films which all explore the theme of “change”. We have three of their films right here – stories about gender transitioning to world issues to Auckland’s millionaire shoe-shine man. Enjoy.

Read more