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Scene 2 Seen Podcast: Cliff Curtis And Tearapa Kahi Discuss ‘Muru’, Its Inspirations, And Their Personal Experiences Dealing With Police

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Welcome back to the Scene 2 Seen Podcast, I am your host Valerie Complex — assistant editor and film writer at Deadline. Had some technical difficulties so that’s why this latest episode didn’t publish Tuesday, but it’s a new day, and here we are.

On today’s episode, I chat with native New Zealanders actor Cliff Curtis and director Tearapa Kahi about the new film Muru, which had its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival this year. In the discussion, Curtis and Kahi talk about the incident that inspired Muru, police brutality within the Maori community, and their personal encounters with the police.

Inspired by actual events, Muru is the powerful story of local Police Sergeant “Taffy” Tāwharau who recently returned home to the remote Ruatoki valley to look after his sick father.

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Taffy’s father’s close associate, Tame Iti, runs a series of boot camps in the valley called Rama (fire light). These camps are centered around survival skills and keeping their shared Tūhoe identity alive. Despite many invitations, Taffy has never attended Camp Rama. Unknown to everyone in the valley, Rama has been under police surveillance for six months, and when a troubled youth (Rusty) fires a loaded rifle, surveillance footage triggers a response, led by Captain Gallagher and an elite STG unit.

The 2007 New Zealand police raids were a series of armed raids conducted over two days in October, but it was really the government assuming that Tame Iti was a domestic terrorist. I don’t want to go any further into the story — you’ve got to hear it from them.

Early ideas for Muru the film were developed by Kahi, Curtis and Iti in 2015. Curtis and Kahi have had a longstanding relationship beginning in 2007, when Curtis was executive producer on one of Kahi’s short films.

Curtis is a New Zealand-born actor with extensive local and international credits. He made his feature film debut in Jane Campion’s Oscar winner The Piano before starring in Once Were Warriors as Uncle Billy and in Whale Rider. In 2014, he starred in James Napier Robertson’s box office hit The Dark Horse, taking home Best Actor at the New Zealand Film Awards. Other credits include Martin Scorsese’s Bringing Out the Dead, David O. Russell’s Three Kings, Antoine Fuqua’s Training Day, Len Wiseman’s Live Free or Die Hard, and Danny Boyle’s Sunshine.

Kahi has written and directed documentaries, award-winning shorts and the film Mt Zion starring Stan Walker — the most successful local cinema release of 2012. He has since directed two feature-length music documentaries: acclaimed Moa-nominated Poi E: The Story of Our Song in 2016, and Herbs – Songs of Freedom in 2019. Other directing credits include: Taua – War Party and The Speaker. 

If you like what you hear, be sure to review, like and subscribe to the show on Apple podcast and Spotify. 

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Netflix & Paramount+ To Profile ‘Strip Search Caller’ ; TVOKids Spotlights Down Syndrome With Toon Series; ‘One Piece Film Red’ London Takeover — Global Briefs

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Netflix & Paramount+ UK To Profile ‘Strip Search Caller’

Netflix and Paramount+ have struck a first of its kind-of-deal over a true crime documentary telling the story of the strip search caller in the U.S. Paramount+ has taken UK rights to Pervert: The Hunt for the Strip Search Caller and Netflix has rest of world on the doc, which it will be calling Don’t Pick Up the Phone. The deal is believed to be the first time two streamers have worked in such a way in the UK and rest of world. The doc tells the shocking story of a hoax caller who targeted fast food restaurants across the U.S. – posing as a police officer investigating a theft, the caller instructed managers to strip-search the young female employees he said were suspects. For many victims, what began as a humiliating strip search escalated into sexual abuse.

Canada’s TVOKids Spotlights Down Syndrome In Animated Series ‘Griffin And Turner’

EXCLUSIVE: Ontario, Canada’s TVOkids and Big Jump Entertainment are working on 2D-animated series Griffin and Turner. Based on real Canadian brothers who a significant online following, the show follows the supportive pair as they, their friends and family undertake personal challenges but focus on the journey rather than winning. Turner has Down syndrome, and TVOKids executive producer Kirsten Hurd noted the series has been developed in consultation with the Down syndrome community. Producer Big Jump is behind shows such as Shutterbug and Big Words, Small Stories.

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London Gets ‘One Piece Film Red’ Takeover After Record Haul

To celebrate the record-breaking haul of One Piece Film Red in the UK, the Straw Hat Pirates are set for a takeover of iconic London locations on November 26. Via local distributor Anime Limited and Toei Animation, the cast and memorable scenes from the series will be projected onto the County Hall of London, opposite the London Eye as well as other key locations. One Piece Film: Red has grossed over £800,000 in the UK and Ireland since it released earlier this month, making it the biggest of the long-running franchise. A phenomenon in Japan, One Piece Film Red has grossed $162M to date worldwide 



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‘All Quiet On The Western Front’, ‘Belfast’ Top 2022 EFA Arts & Crafts Awards

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Edward Berger’s All Quiet On The Western Front and Kenneth Branagh’s Belfast top the European Film Academy’s Excellence Awards honoring achievement in the arts and crafts categories, the winners of which were announced on Wednesday.

Belfast won best European Production Design for Jim Clay, whose credits include Children Of Men, for which he won a Bafta in 2006, and Murder On The Orient Express.

The drama, set against the backdrop of the beginnings of “The Troubles” in Northern Ireland in 1969, also won best European Costume Design for Charlotte Walter (Blithe Spirit, Misbehaviour)

Netflix-backed German WWI drama All Quiet On The Western Front won best European Make-up & Hair for Heike Merker, and Best European Special Effects for Frank Petzold, Viktor Müller and Markus Frank.

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 In other categories, best European Cinematography was won by Kate McCullough for her work on Colm Bairéad’s Irish-language drama The Quiet Girl.

Best European Editing went to Özcan Vardar and Eytan İpeker for Turkish director Emin Alper’s drama Burning Days.

Polish composer Paweł Mykietyn won best European Original Score went for Jerzy Skolimowski’s EO.

Best European Sound went to Simone Paolo Olivero, Paolo Benvenuti, Benni Atria, Marco Saitta, Ansgar Frerich & Florian Holzner for Michelangelo Frammartino’s cave exploration drama The Hole.

The winners, which are decided by a special expert jury, will receive their awards at the European Film Awards ceremony on 10 December in Reykjavík.

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Jennifer Lopez’s Social Media Mysteriously Goes Dark

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EXCLUSIVE: The actress, producer and top-selling performing artist’s social media channels including Instagram, Facebook, Tik Tok and Twitter have suddenly gone dark in their featured/cover images.

Reps for Jennifer Lopez were unavailable for comment, but we hear from others that The Hustlers and Marry Me actress is on the verge of announcing a new project.

Here’s a look at her Instagram tonight:

While Lopez’s Instagram had erased all posts, a trail of her previous postings remained on Facebook, Tik Tok and Twitter. Across all four social media portals, Lopez counts close to 347M followers, the majority of that coming from her Instagram.

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Lopez’s Nuyorican Productions in June 2021 signed a multi-year first-look deal with Netflix spanning feature films, TV series and unscripted content, with an emphasis on projects that support diverse female actors, writers and filmmakers. Lopez co-runs Nuyorican Productions with her producing partner Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas.

Lopez scored her best opening for a live-action movie at the domestic box office with STX’s 2019 stripper caper Hustlers which debuted to $33.1 million, and grossed $105M stateside, $157.6M worldwide.  As a recording artist, Lopez has sold over 70 million albums, with J.Lo became her bestselling album with 3.8M copies sold in the U.S. and 12M global. Her Netflix thriller The Mother from director Niki Caro is set to debut in May. Her romantic comedy Shotgun Wedding with Josh Duhamel will hit Prime Video on Jan. 27.

On Facebook, one of her followers, Steffany Merino wrote, “What’s happened? Hope you and your wonderful family are ok. I’ll pray for your health and safety.”

Again, we hear something special is in the works in the next few days.



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