From riches to rags: NZ’s most flamboyant shoe-shiner



Larry Woods, Mister Sunshine has to be New Zealand’s most famous and flamboyant shoe-shiner.

Big, little, smart or casual, he shines them all for free so it’s not exactly making him a rich man.

He earns money from his beeswax which he sells for $50.

But this hasn’t always been Mr Woods’ life — he was a multi-millionaire once mingling with big names among high fashion.

But despite all the money and perks, he wasn’t happy and after a few bad deals and a couple of divorces, he lost it all.

Now his riches to rag story has been made in to a short film which premieres tonight in Auckland.

Watch the video for the full Story report.

You can now watch the short film on

via Story (Watch it here)

Loading Docs Launches Tomorrow

SCREENZ_FooterLogoThe third edition of Loading Docs will release all 10 of its 2016 titles tomorrow.

The 2016 films, which were announced earlier in the year, are Robert George’s Aka’ōu: Tātatau in the Cook Islands, Joe Hitchcock’s Blood Sugar, Ryan Heron & Andy Deere’s Bludgeon, Greg Wood & Peter Alsop’sThe Colourist, Felicity Morgan-Rhind’s How Mr and Mrs Gock Saved the Kumara, Doug Dillaman & Brendan Withy’s Imagine the World is Ending, Eldon Booth’s Mister Sunshine (fka The Impeccable Larry Woods), Louise Leitch’s Same but Different, Leigh Minarapa’s Street Smart and Rose Archer’s Water for Gold.

Two of the titles, How Mr and Mrs Gock Saved the Kumara and Water for Gold, have accompanied features in this year’s NZIFF. For the remaining eight, the release is effectively the premiere.

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1452135303.tearaway-magazine.mHave you ever wondered how the world would change in the face of an apocalypse? Would the issues we face today still matter as much if the world was coming to an end?

These are some of the questions that two Mt. Albert Grammar students believe could change the way we live.

Sixteen-year-old students Jahmal Nightingale and Joseph McNamara are the writers and performers ofImagine the World is Ending. It has been selected by Loading Docs as one of ten short documentaries and films, all revolving around this year’s theme of ‘change’.

Imagine the World is Ending began as a piece for a slam poetry contest.

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Regina Tito: from sleeping rough to helping the homeless

Portrait of Regina Tito standing against a wall

Regina Tito Photo: Supplied

Regina Tito has bravely put her life’s story on show in a short documentary talking about wellington’s homeless community. She works with the Downtown Community Ministry in the capital, helping some of the city’s most vulnerable residents. And she knows what they’re going through. Regina has first-hand experience living on the streets after periods of, as a very young teen, walking out of a violent household to fend for herself. She slept rough and she’s had some stints in prison, but she has turned her life around, she’s got herself an education and she is now helping the community she knows well. She has also raised a family and is a grandmother.

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Louise Leitch and Byron Skinner: transition and friendship


Louise Leitch is a Christchurch director whose short film Same But Different features the true story of her husband’s best friend Byron Skinner who transitioned from a man to a woman at age 50 after a marriage and three children.

Byron Skinner (right) tramping with his best friend, Neil.

Byron Skinner (right) tramping with his best friend, Neil. Photo: Kirk Pflaum

Same But Different features in Loading Docs, the annual short film initiative which funds ten filmmakers (this year working on the subject of ‘change’). The series launches online on 4 August, and will also be broadcast on TVNZ ON Demand.

via Radio New Zealand

Uncertainty, fear and hunger: what it is like to sleep rough on Wellington’s streets

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 3.24.22 pm
Regina Tito now works with DCM a homelessness service in central Wellington.

Regina Tito now works with DCM a homelessness service in central Wellington.

For some people, sleeping on the streets is safer than being at home.

Wellington woman Regina Tito can still recall the night that family violence forced her out of her house and on to the streets aged 11.

That night she made the roof of Epuni railway station in Lower Hutt her home.

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Hearts and eyeballs

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 10.04.04 amAs audiences fracture across screens and platforms, Loading Docs are thinking outside the box to create and distribute NZ short documentaries. Julia Parnell tells us more.
Loading Docs was created to inject some innovative thinking into the creation and distribution of New Zealand documentaries. With backing from NZ On Air and NZ Film Commission they have taken short docos to screens around the world including film festivals, TVNZ OnDemand, mainstream media and in-flight entertainment.


Each year Loading Docs selects 10 short documentary proposals, which are then supported from development through to distribution. As they get ready to release the 2016 shorts, executive producer Julia Parnell shares her top tips for connecting with media and audiences.

“Think about your audience as a community and have meaningful engagement with them, you want hearts not eyeballs.”

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Media Release 23 February 2016

On Tuesday 23rd February, 10 incredible new Loading Docs projects will launch their crowdfunding campaigns. It is a nerve wracking time for all ten teams as they embark on their mission to raise $2000 in one month in order to unlock access to match funding and begin their Loading Docs journey. They will then create 10 unique 3-minute documentaries that delight, engage and change the way that New Zealanders see exceptional real life local stories.

These 10 new films come hot on the heels of an impressive milestone for the Loading Docs brand, whose previous documentary shorts have cumulatively hit a million views across a variety of platforms; Online, OnDemand and on the big screen.

The 2016 Loading Docs shorts will create the opportunity to experience change in many different ways. Some films share personal stories of dramatic change, others address major social, political and environmental changes, and all have the potential to change the way viewers think and feel.

For the third year running the Loading Docs initiative will fund, create and distribute ten local 3- minute documentaries online, with support from NZ On Air and The New Zealand Film Commission. The documentary makers each need to raise $2000 via crowd funding. Once that target is met the Loading Docs fund contributes $4000 worth of production funds plus a post- production package at Toybox and Sale Street Studios. Each Loading Docs project also receives ongoing mentoring and support throughout production.

The documentaries are then created and released in July. “With online marketing and distribution ruling modern media, crowdfunding is an integral starting point for the Loading Docs teams, providing an opportunity for the filmmakers to find an audience for their work early in the creative process. This way the core audience is invested in the subject matter, the process and ultimately the stories and filmmakers themselves” says Executive Producer Julia Parnell.

Loading Docs has once again partnered with arts funding website Boosted and the ten campaigns will run for one month, ending on the 24th March. Auckland Boosted Ambassador, Dominic Hoey has this to say about working with Loading Docs this year “At Boosted we’re all really excited to get behind Loading Docs for another year, and help some of the country’s most promising film makers bring their ideas to life.”

The initiative’s executive producers Anna Jackson and Julia Parnell are thrilled with the high calibre of this year’s shorts and hope the public will also be inspired to get behind the incredible talent and the compelling local stories and give them the Boost they need to get their documentaries made.

shorts HERE.