Far North Youth Filmmaking Workshop

Script to Screen presents a free four-day filmmaking workshop in the July school holidays for 14 – 18 year olds.

This is an outstanding opportunity for the next generation of filmmakers to develop skills and learn about the fundamentals of crafting a story idea, writing a script, and acting for camera. The aim of the workshop is to foster filmmaking talent in the Far North region and to provide an opportunity for young creatives to learn new skills and level up without having to travel outside of the region. No experience or prior knowledge of filmmaking is necessary. We encourage anyone who has an interest in telling stories for the screen and acting to apply.

The programme will be taught by Michael Bennett (storytelling and screenwriting) and Jamie Irvine (storytelling and acting).

When and where:
Monday 15th July – Thursday 18th July
9am – 3pm each day

Turner Centre, 43 Cobham Road, Kerikeri 0230

The venue is wheelchair accessible

Programme Structure:
Day 1 – Developing a story idea and screenwriting principles
Day 2 – Writing a scene
Day 3 – Storytelling and acting
Day 4 – Taping the scenes, debrief and discussion.

Cost: The workshop is free, please register via Humanitix as spaces are limited

Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea are provided. However, if you have special dietary requirements (allergies, gluten free, dairy free, keto, paleo, etc) please bring food with you.



Michael Bennett
(Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Whakaue) is a screenwriter, filmmaker and author. Michael’s short films and feature films have screened and won awards internationally, including Cannes, Toronto, Berlin, Locarno, New York, London, ImagiNative and Dreamspeakers. He is the 2020 recipient of the Te Aupounamu Māori Screen Excellence Award, awarded by the NZ Film Commission for excellence in Māori filmmaking. Michael devoted many years of his recent career to the fight for justice for Teina Pora, a young Māori man wrongly imprisoned for 21 years. Michael made the documentary The Confessions of Prisoner T, which lead to the discovery of evidence pivotal to Teina’s exoneration. Michael directed and co-wrote the TV feature film In Dark Places about Teina’s case, which was finalist for a record 11 awards in the NZ Television Awards, winning Best Film and Best Director. Michael has been head writer or showrunner for many dozens of hours of prime-time television drama including The Gone (NZ / Ireland crime thriller), Vegas (crime thriller), Te Kohu (supernatural drama), and Mataku (the Māori Twilight Zone). Michael’s debut novel Better The Blood, a crime thriller, was published in 2022 in the UK, USA, Australia and NZ, with nine international translations. Better The Blood was a finalist for the fiction prize at the 2023 New Zealand literary awards (The Ockhams) and won Best First Novel at the Ngaio Marsh Awards. Michael is currently adapting his novel for television, and his second novel, Return To Blood, is in bookstores now.


As an Actor, Director and Acting Coach Jamie Irvine has worked in Australia, Los Angeles, New York and New Zealand. Jamie is a NIDA acting graduate and continued his study with Susan Batson and at the Stella Adler Studio in NYC. Over twenty years, he has taught acting at NIDA, Actors Centre Australia, Theatre of Arts in Hollywood, South Seas Film School and various other institutions. Acting Credits include Sweet Tooth, Tinā, Power Rangers: Dino Fury, Shortland St, Underbelly:Land of the Long Green Cloud, Black Hands, Westside, Home and Away, Anzac Girls and The Brokenwood Mysteries. Jamie has also directed across several mediums and in 2022 he directed NZ on Air funded webseries Here if you Need. Jamie joined Script to Screen in January 2023, where he currently works as Programme Manager.

This workshop is made possible thanks to generous support from Foundation North and White Studios. 

We are also running an adult workshop. Check it out using the link below.




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