Tag Archive for: Tribeca

Israel Adesanya lays with eyes closed in a bath sprinkled with flower petals

Stylebender, directed by DEGANZ Incubator alum Zoe McIntosh, will premiere at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. Out of the 28 documentaries in the programme, this is one of the 19 female-directed features.

Zoe, well known for her work on Netflix’s docu-series Dark Tourist and her short The World in Your Window, strikes again with this moving and inspirational story. The film follows Israel ‘The Last Stylebender’ Adesanya, a Nigerian-born New Zealand-based MMA fighter and recent UFC middleweight champ, through his tumultuous life and career path.

Israel reveals his internal struggles of trying to become the man he has always wanted to be despite his demons. Through the healing power of dance, Zoe and Israel explore themes of masculinity, mental health, and the consequences of bullying. With production starting in 2018, before Israel’s rise to fame, his personal and career growth unravel right before the lens.

In a statement to NZFC, Zoe shares:

My goal was always to get under the gloss and hype to unlock the poetry, emotion, and contradictions inherent in Israel. I wanted to make a film that spoke not only to MMA fans but to a wider audience who would connect with Israel’s authenticity and the importance of being your own ‘freaky’ self.

Tribeca Film Festival is an annual event founded by Robert De Niro, featuring about 600 screenings. Zoe will attend the festival with support from the New Zealand Film Commission.

Essie Davis and Thomasin McKenzie in The Justice of Bunny King

On July 29, following its world premiere at Tribeca Film Festival, DEGNZ is excited to be hosting a screening of The Justice of Bunny King, in association with Rialto Cinemas. The film follows Bunny King (Essie Davis), a mother of two who’s a rough cut diamond with a sketchy past. While battling the system to reunite with her children, a confrontation leads her to take her niece Tonyah (Thomasin McKenzie) under her wing. With the world against her and Tonyah, Bunny’s battle has just begun.

Following the screening, audiences will be joined by director Gaysorn Thavat for a Q&A session, moderated by Lucy Wigmore.

We look forward to seeing you there!

When: Thursday 29 July, 6pm
Where: Rialto Cinemas Newmarket, 167-169 Broadway, Newmarket, Auckland

Film Industry Member tickets only $12

Book now

DEGNZ members Fiona McKenzie and Scott Flyger’s short film Peninsula has been officially selected to have its World Premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. Directed and written by Fiona, the film follows a father trying to reconnect with his estranged son, leading to unexpected consequences.

Speaking to Scoop, Flyger, the editor and producer of the short film, stated how thrilled he was to see Peninsula, an independently produced and funded film, selected by one of the world’s top tier festivals, a “no mean feat”. The film was shot in Banks Peninsula in 2019.

Peninsula will have its World Premiere on June 16.

Essie Davis and Thomasin McKenzie in The Justice of Bunny King

Congratulations to DEGNZ member Cushla Dillon, editor on The Justice of Bunny King, after it was announced that the film will have its World Premiere at the esteemed Tribeca Film Festival that runs annually in New York City.

The Justice of Bunny King follows Essie Davis as a mother of two battling against the world, with her niece (Thomasin McKenzie) by her side. Speaking to the New Zealand Film Commission director Gaysorn Thavat stated that she is incredibly proud and excited to have their film’s World Premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival, a film that “celebrates the struggles of ordinary women facing extraordinary struggles”.

It will also compete for the Best Female Filmmaker and the Best New Narrative Director Awards.

The Tribeca Film Festival runs from June 9-20 and will be available online.