Tourism New Zealand has played down media reports that claimed it had barred the haka and sheep from being filmed by overseas TV crews.
It was reported that following the filming of America’s Next Top Model in New Zealand in 2010, Tourism NZ had blacklisted the haka and sheep from being filmed in order to steer crews away from clichés.
Tourism NZ says the claim was taken out of context by certain media outlets.
In a statement made to NBR, Tourism NZ general manager of corporate affairs Chris Roberts confirmed that while the haka and sheep had been mentioned in their report on international media coverage of the country, they were never blacklisted subjects.
Roberts says that Tourism NZ believed that extreme caution was needed when dealing with certain subjects in New Zealand.
“New Zealand being a land of sheep is a cliché that we try to move on from. These issues were specific to this project and we are not steering other foreign TV shows away from portraying Maori culture.”
He said that while America’s Next Top Model may not have been the perfect fit for NZ, it still delivered on set targets.