TVNZ shows dominated the Qantas Film and Television Awards 2010 winning 14 out of 24 possible accolades in the General Television categories. Among the big winners was TV2’s drama series The Cult and TV ONE’s South. 

A finalist in nine categories, Great Southern Television production The Cult won six awards, including Cinematography, Best Original Music and Best Editing as well as Best Actress for Danielle Cormack, Best Supporting Actress for Lisa Chappell, and Best Contribution to Design.

TV ONE’s local content also triumphed with Jam TV winning four of awards including Best Information/Lifestyle Programme for Radar’s Patch, Best Director for South, and Best Observational Reality Series for Intrepid Journeys and Marcus Lush winning Best Presenter for South.

KHF Media’s Emmy Award-winning online drama, Reservoir Hill, won the Qantas Cure Kids Best Children’s Programme award and is a tribute to the shows success on global scale. Reservoir Hill returned to TVNZ Ondemand for a second series this week and continues to break new ground online.

Andrew Shaw, Head of Commissioning, is thrilled with the outcome. He says, “to have won an Emmy Award and now be recognised locally is an all round great achievement.

“The success of TVNZ’s first online drama series demonstrates the strength of programming across all platforms and our ability to inspire New Zealanders on every screen,” he continues.

“It is the knowledge base and strength of the TVNZ drama commissioning and programming teams, who worked closely with New Zealand’s leading production companies to create these shows, which continues to see us win awards year on year.

TVNZ News and Current Affairs shows also won eight out of the possible 11 Qantas Awards available, including Best News, Journalist of the Year, and Best Current Affairs. Paul Henry also won the inaugural New Idea People’s Choice Award.



General Television


Best Information/Lifestyle Programme Radar’s Patch, Jane Andrews, Jam TV Ltd

Best Observational Reality Series Intrepid Journeys, Dean Cornish, Jam TV Ltd

Best Constructed Reality Series One Land, Greg Heathcote and Bailey Mackey, Eyeworks New Zealand

Best Presenter – Entertainment/Factual Programme Marcus Lush, South, Jam TV Ltd

Best Director – Entertainment/Factual Programme Melanie Rakena, South, Jam TV Ltd

Kordia Group Ltd Best Multi Camera Direction Steve Jamieson, Heineken Open Tennis Final 2010



Best Performance by an Actress in General Television Danielle Cormack, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd

Best Performance by a Supporting Actress in General Television Lisa Chappell, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd

Best Performance by a Supporting Actor in General Television Matt Whelan, Go Girls, South Pacific Pictures

Best Current Affairs Camera Martin Anderson, ‘Lost And Found’, 20/20

Best Cinematography – Drama/Comedy Programme Simon Reira, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd

Images and Best Sound Editing – Drama/Comedy Programme Eric de Beus, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd

Best Original Music in General Television Rhian Sheehan, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd

Best Contribution To Design in General Television David Cooke, The Cult, Great Southern Television Ltd



Qantas Best Children’s/Youth Programme Reservoir Hill, KHF Media Ltd

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Here’s a summary of how the new Kiwi shows of 2009 have fared based on episodes screened to date…

Go Girls and 7 Days have been picked up for a season season.

Scroll across to see more shows.

Data sourced from AGB Nielsen, showing average total NZ viewer numbers (5+).
Averages to date do not include the premiere episode viewership figures.
Data for episodes screened to date: October 24, 2009.

So I have so far been really enjoying Marcus Lush and South, but would love to know what others were thinking. I think all of the places he has been to are just amazing! And I’m loving all the people he’s meeting along the way. I think in the last episode he travlled to Fiordland by boat and traced Captain Cook’s boat Journey – so so interesting! Definitely wont be tuning out any time soon.

7:00pm Sunday, August 16 on TV One

South: The cardinal point on the mariner’s compass, 180° clockwise from due north; an area or region lying in the south.

Southland has become a cardinal point for television and radio personality Marcus Lush’s life. Moving to the region six years ago was a transformative process for him. While work introduced him to the area, the southern terrain, isolation and history, captured his imagination.

It is one thing to navigate the twists and turns of Southland’s undulating geography, it is another to feel it and understand the nuances of what makes this region special and important to nationhood. Whether braving Foveaux Strait on an oyster boat; canoeing down remote river gorges; or trekking into the wilds of Fiordland, Marcus Lush was up for it, and the result is TV ONE’s new series South, starting tonight at 7pm.

As Lush talks about the challenges of making South, which starts out in his adopted hometown of Bluff, the superlatives just keep coming. “We feature places that have never been filmed before, and get into these amazing tales that no one has heard before. People will be blown away by this stuff,” Lush says.

His favourite parts of the two months filming were canoeing down the Clutha River – “it was fantastic, I can’t believe more people don’t do it” – and sailing through the lower fiords of Fiordland – “quite extraordinary”.

He also highly rates the walk into Puyseger Point, even though he didn’t quite make it to his intended destination. “It’s such incredible, rugged bush. The tramp was difficult and challenging, but unbelievably spectacular.

“I love the fact you can get so remote in New Zealand that, in five days, you only see two people. These are parts of the country so inaccessible, you could get lost forever. The tracks scare people away, they’re that dangerous.”

A highlight of Stewart Island was seeing a Kiwi running along a track he says: “In quite a jaunty fashion actually, that was momentous.”

Then there were the characters he met such as ‘Tracker’ the oyster man, and ‘Peanut’, New Zealand’s most remote resident and finder of our largest piece of space junk. “What I’ve learned about the people who live in the south is that they’re anchored to the land. You couldn’t drag them away from it – they look like they belong there. And they’ve got all these amazing obsessions, passions and persuasions.”

Lush worked on South with his long-time collaborator, Jam TV producer Melanie Rakena, with whom he also made Off The Rails and Ice. Rakena says, “Marcus has an amazing knack for getting people to tell him their stories – it’s because of his honesty and genuine love of New Zealand and New Zealanders.”

The idea for the series came after Lush realised his original plan to do a series covering the country’s rivers was logistically too difficult. “So I thought, ‘here I am living in Southland where there are heaps of amazing stories. It’s where New Zealand really got started, so let’s begin here and work our way up the country’,” says Lush, who hopes next up will be ‘Plains’, starting in Wanaka and heading up the West Coast and over to Hanmer.

Episode ones sees Lush go south from Bluff to Stewart Island to a teepee homestay. He visits New Zealand’s tallest lighthouse and finds a fitting replacement to Bluff’s Paua House.