Hollow Men doco a winner at film fest

01:43, Jan 31 2009
POPULAR FLICK: <i>The Hollow Men</i> has proved to be a big drawcard at the Wellington film festival.

A sold-out premiere for The Hollow Men at the Wellington Film Festival has buoyed hopes that the documentary will get a general release this year.

The film, based on activist Nicky Hager's book about the inner workings of the National Party's campaign before the 2005 election, screened at the 480-seat Paramount Cinema yesterday.

Film-maker Alister Barry said he was unsure before the premiere whether many people would want to see it. "I thought perhaps people would see it as old news.

"I was told an hour before that it was sold out and people wanting to get tickets were being turned away. I thought, `Thank God for that. People are coming."'

Barry said the response meant he had "a strong argument" to persuade cinemas to screen the film.

The 100-minute documentary focuses on the leaked personal emails from leader Don Brash's computer and other internal documents which formed the basis for Hager's book.

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The film expands on Hager's 2006 book with new information, including the use by National leader John Key of Australian political strategy company Crosby/Textor, which had also worked with Dr Brash.

It also has "unusual footage" of Dr Brash meeting Exclusive Brethren.

"It was the day before the first [Exclusive Brethren] leaflet was delivered around New Zealand, which was the anti-Greens one," Barry said.

The Hollow Men screens at the Wellington Film Festival at the Paramount tomorrow at 1.30pm.

 

The Dominion Post