Following the recent New Zealand release of The Moon is Upside Down, Loren Taylor (writer/director/actor) joins moderator and writer Duncan Sarkies (Scarfies, and Two Little Boys) to discuss her writing process, the challenges of creating stories and characters that come alive on screen, and how she and her team moved this unique and beautifully crafted feature from her initial idea to production and release.

With a production schedule of just 22 days and a budget of $1.5million The Moon is Upside Down is a significant achievement. This promises to be a fascinating discussion and a rare insight into processes that will appeal to filmmakers at all levels, especially those wanting to make their first feature film.

“With exceptional performances, a deft tone and universal themes, The Moon is Upside Down is destined to become a film festival favourite. Those looking for blockbuster razzle-dazzle won’t find it here. But those looking for something deeper and more meaningful, well, they’ll find a lot to connect with.” – NZ Herald

Wednesday 26th June 2024 

6:30pm – 7:30pm – TALK 
7:30pm – 8:30pm – Cash bar, socialising and pizza

$5.00 + GST + Booking Fee. Sales via Humanitix to secure your seat

Te Auaha NZ Institute of Creativity, 65 Dixon St, Te Aro, Wellington

After the TALK, stay and have pizza on Script to Screen. There will be a cash bar and socialising with fellow filmmakers.

This Script to Screen TALKS is made possible thanks to New Zealand Film CommissionWhite Studios and Images and Sound.

Photograph by Rebecca McMillian


Loren Taylor is a director, actor and writer. Her debut feature as writer and director The Moon is Upside Down had its world premiere in competition at Estonia’s A-List festival POFF Tallinn Black Nights November 2023 where it played to sell-out houses and was awarded Best First Feature. Vendetta will release the film in Aotearoa New Zealand in May.  

Hey Brainy Man, the NZFC-funded short Loren co-directed with Jo Randerson, won NZ’s Best at Te Whānau Marama NZIFF 2023.  Evoke, a VR experience she wrote and co-directed was awarded the XR Award at DocEdge 2023.   

Loren attended the Sundance Feature lab and worked with Taika Waititi on their award-winning screenplay for Eagle vs Shark. She won Best Actress at the Newport International and St Tropez Film Festivals for her role as Lily. As a casting director Loren has worked on, among others, What We Do in the ShadowsThe Light Between Oceans and Top of The Lake. She is known for her work with children, which began with casting and on-set coaching for the Oscar nominated short Two Cars One Night. She is an advisor for and Board member of Story Camp Aotearoa and has been a guest mentor at A Wave in the Ocean.


Duncan Sarkies is an award-winning screenwriter, playwright and novelist. His work, heralded by critics for its originality, is best known for its eccentric plots and darkly comic portrayals of ‘the outsider’ and the disturbed. 
Duncan’s career has been prolific across a variety of mediums. He wrote one episode for What We Do In The Shadows and two episodes for Flight of the Conchords. He has written several plays, a short story collection and two novels. Linda Herrick of the Weekend Herald describes Sarkies’ 2008 novel, Two Little Boys, as: ‘Quick, clever, twisted, acutely funny…This is the most amazing book. It’s dark, wildly funny, vivid, and brilliantly original.’ Two Little Boys, adapted in 2012 for the screen (starring Hamish Blake and Bret McKenzie) was co-written by Duncan and his brother Robert, as was the massively popular Scarfies. Duncan also wrote and contributed to the writing of four episodes of ABC’s show Maximum Choppage that aired in 2015, and script edited for ABC’s Soul Mates. He was the director, writer and co-creator of The Mysterious Secrets of Uncle Bertie’s Botanarium, a fantasy podcast series, which Loren Taylor acted in. 2025 will see Duncan release a third novel, Star Gazers, an allegory about the collapse of democracy in a society of alpaca breeders, while he is also developing a television project with comedian Barnie Duncan and a film project with animator Ned Wenlock. 
Duncan currently lives in Te Whanganui a Tara. 

Talk Tickets Available Here



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