NZ On Air backs third season of The Brokenwood Mysteries

NicSampsonNeillReaFernSutherlandTheBrokenwoodMysteriesSeason2Episode3The homegrown murder-mystery series The Brokenwood Mysteries will be back for a third season with the support of New Zealand on Air (NZOA).

The first two seasons on Prime have attracted a devoted audience and have been a colourful addition to the local drama slate.

“We have been delighted by the quirky characters and storylines. The murder-mystery genre is a difficult one to crack, and South Pacific Pictures and the writers have achieved that,” said NZOA Chief Executive Jane Wrightson.

Wrightson continued that NZOA’s drama budget is under unprecedented pressure, with more projects seeking support than funds available.

“Nonetheless we have a good mix of new and returning drama projects for 2016 which need time to establish themselves. It’s important that, where possible, NZOA supports quality returning drama series. This ensures the most effective use use of scarce funds and give producers and broadcasters some degree of certainty in this most complex of genres,” said Wrightson.

A proposed new serial drama, to screen on TV3 in the 5:30pm time slot, was given serious consideration but was not supported.

The project was unable to be to be considered a priority due to constrained funding and competing priorities. The proposal required an ongoing financial commitment from NZOA that the Board felt was unsustainable in the current climate of a static budget but increasing demand.

MediaWorks, the owners of TV3, are disappointed with the decision.

Andrew Szusterman, MediaWorks Group Content and Entertainment Brand Director, said the drama would have given long-term benefits to the New Zealand production industry.

“We are extremely disappointed with New Zealand on Air’s decision,” said Szusterman. “Outside of bringing some fresh, local drama to Kiwi audiences, this would have made a significant and on-going contribution to New Zealand’s production industry and provided many on-going jobs for the creative sector.”

Funding details

The Brokenwood Mysteries, 4 x 2 hours, South Pacific Pictures for Prime. $4,116,000.

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