Oscar-Nominated and Emmy Award-Winning Editor to Mentor Peter O’Donoghue


The Directors & Editors Guild of NZ (DEGNZ) is thrilled to announce Peter O’Donoghue as the recipient of our 2017 International Editor Mentorship with Oscar-nominated and Emmy Award-winning American documentary editor Doug Blush.

“I’m thrilled at the prospect of working with someone as prolific and talented as Doug,” said O’Donoghue. “His output is gargantuan and his passion for the craft is truly invigorating. Needless to say I plan to squeeze all I can from this great opportunity.”

“I’m very excited to work with Peter O’Donoghue,” said Blush. “We immediately bonded, talking about our mutual appreciation for great storytelling in documentary and challenging and pushing the genre to try new techniques and ideas in editorial and much more.”

Peter is well known for his work with NZ director Florian Habicht. Their first film together was Land of the Long White Cloud in 2008. Their 2011 co-written feature film Love Story (shot in New York) won Best Film, Best Director (Florian) and Best Editor (Peter) at the 2011 New Zealand Film & Television Awards. Their 2014 collaboration – Pulp: a Film about Life, Death and Supermarkets is a UK production showcasing the iconic Brit-pop band Pulp, their enigmatic front man Jarvis Cocker, and their roots in the northern industrial town of Sheffield. Peter was again co-writer and editor. The film had its world premiere at SXSW 2014 in Austin, Texas, and has played in numerous festivals since. It won Best Music Film at the NME 2015 Music Awards in London. Their latest co-written effort is documentary feature Spookers, completed In September 2016.

Doug is an award winning documentary director, editor, cinematographer, and writer who has edited a wide range of major theatrically released documentaries, including crossword puzzle culture Wordplay, the national debt crisis I.O.U.S.A., the hypocrisy of closeted gay politician in Outrage, corporate David and Goliath battles in Beer Wars, and the adaptation of the popular book Freakonomics. He recently was co-writer and editor of the Sundance 2011 Premiere documentary These Amazing Shadows, and consulting editor for the Sundance 2011 Competition documentary Troubadours, as well as executive producer and co-editor of Superheroes in the 2011 Slamdance Documentary Competition and on HBO. In 2012, The Invisible War, which he edited and associate produced with director Kirby Dick, won the Sundance Audience Award and was nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary.

“Doug and Peter seemed like the ideal match for a mentorship, with each being at major points in their careers,” said Tui Ruwhiu, Executive Director of DEGNZ. “We are excited to see where Peter goes with the knowledge, expertise and career advice that Doug brings in documentary filmmaking.”

The mentorship is an industry professional development initiative funded by the New Zealand Film Commission and managed by DEGNZ. The overall intention of the International Editor Mentorship is to inspire a promising New Zealand editor and demystify the international film industry. The experience offers genuine insight into creative process and engagement with the industry as a whole, while providing a solid platform upon which to build an international career.


For further information, please contact:
Tui Ruwhiu
Executive Director
Directors & Editors Guild of NZ

Peter O’Donoghue is an award-winning editor / filmmaker from NZ based in Sydney, Australia. He has been working in film and television since 2006 on projects in Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, the U.S. and the UK.
With a background originally in music and writing, picture editing has now become Peter’s main passion – where storytelling, rhythm, atmosphere, music and sound all come together to bring the most out of a project’s vision and material. He also works as a screenwriter and has directed one long-form documentary and two short dramas.
In 2012-2013 Peter was editor on ABC Australia’s landmark documentary series First Footprints (broadcast July/August 2013), produced and directed by Bentley Dean and Martin Butler. As well as co-editing the ABC series with Tania Nehme, his work included a cut down of the 4 episodes to a 2-ep version for Arte France and a 90 minute festival version.
From 2011 to 2013, Peter directed and edited the 52-minute documentary Happy Everyday: Park Life in China, an upbeat reflection on self-censorship among retirees in the closely monitored public spaces of Beijing and Shanghai. The film was financed by South Australia Film Corporation and released in July 2013. It is represented by broadcast sales agent PBS International.
In 2014 Peter worked as co-editor on Chris Pryor and Miriam Smith’s new documentary feature The Ground We Won., about the exploits of a rural NZ rugby team. The film opened theatrically in NZ in May 2015 amid glowing reviews.

Doug Blush A.C.E. is an award-winning director, producer, editor, writer and cinematographer who has worked on over fifty feature documentaries and TV programmes, and has been nominated five times for Best Editing at the Sundance Film Festival.
Doug’s recent credits include the Oscar-winning theatrical hit 20 Feet From Stardom, directed by Morgan Neville, which won him an ACE Eddie Award for Best Documentary Editing. Doug was editor and associate producer of 2012’s Academy Award nominated and double Emmy Award winning The Invisible War, directed by Kirby Dick, and worked with the same team on the Oscar-shortlisted film The Hunting Ground. His latest films as supervising editor include The Music of Strangers and Jim, which won the Audience Award at Sundance 2016 and aired on HBO.
He also co-directed Of Two Minds with wife Lisa Klein, which won both the 2013 EIC Prism and SAHMSA Voice Awards for excellence in films on mental health issues. He is working on a follow-up film with Lisa, The S Word, highlighting the rising activism of suicide survivors against silence and stigma.
Doug has been a visiting professor at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, Syracuse University and Malaysia Multimedia University, and has taught across Indonesia with the Sundance Institute.

The Directors & Editors Guild of NZ is a not-for-profit membership organisation that represents Directors and Editors in the New Zealand screen industry. This includes Directors and Editors of feature drama and documentary; television drama, documentary and factual programmes; short films; video art; animation; commercials and web content.
DEGNZ’s two primary roles are advocacy and professional development. We:
• are dedicated to promoting excellence in the arts of directing and editing.
• foster collegiality and unity within the screen industry.
• promote members’ creative and economic rights.
• work to improve industry working conditions and remuneration.
• offer professional advice and information on contracts and industry standards and practice.
• offer professional development events, networking opportunities, career advice, dispute resolution, mentoring, workshops, training, discounts and regular news bulletins for members across all levels of expertise, from novices to seasoned professionals.
• are a voice for Directors and Editors in influencing policy in the interest of our members. We do this through our membership of the pan‐industry group SINZ (Screen Industry New Zealand), and by making submissions to government and public officials.
• internationally work co-operatively with other guilds and we belong to the International Affiliation of English‐Speaking Directors’ Organisations (IEASDO).
DEGNZ is Auckland-based with an office in Grey Lynn.
Contact Details:
Directors & Editors Guild of NZ
Level 2, 66 Surrey Crescent
Grey Lynn
P.O. Box 47-294, Ponsonby

Last updated on 21 February 2018