The NZFC’s Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

Towards the Normalisation of Diversity in the New Zealand Screen Industry (2018-2022)


  • Tom Boniface-Webb Victoria University of Wellington



film, film policy, public film funding, nzfc, new zealand, industry, filmmakers


In 2022 the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) published its first fully comprehensive diversity and inclusion strategy, He Ara Whakaurunga Kanorau. The ambitious strategy aspired to draw together the existing framework of individually focused diversity funds, including those for Māori and women filmmakers, with an overarching set of policy intentions that aimed to position filmmakers from underrepresented groups at the forefront of the agency’s funding strategy. This article looks at how the NZFC aims to normalise its work in the diversity space through the creation of targeted funding strategies, and how the agency’s idealism, most notable in the breadth of the Diversity and Inclusion strategy and its sometimes nebulous content, can clash with the work of individual filmmakers, many of whom produce films that do not assimilate with the artificial framework. However, institutional intervention in the film industry undoubtedly plays a significant part in creating a vibrant national cinema for Aotearoa New Zealand that gives voice to many filmmakers who might have otherwise not been heard.