Coffee love story charms Tropfest selectors

"Coffee is a performance-enhancing drug."

HANNAH FLEMING
Last updated 05:00 19/12/2012
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JONATHAN CAMERON
Nicci Smith, Tim Hook, and Dave Smith at Ozone Coffee Roasters where they filmed their Tropfest movie, which ahs made the finals.

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Taranaki film-makers are hoping a home advantage will give them the edge over fellow finalists at the inaugural New Zealand Tropfest in January.

The event's 16 finalists were announced yesterday and included four groups from Taranaki.

The finalists' seven-minute films will be aired in front of thousands at the Bowl of Brooklands.

New Plymouth team Touching Cloth was gobsmacked its quirky musical Cappuccino Tango was among the final 16.

Director Dave Smith said although they had hoped and prayed, it was always tricky to know what the judges looked for. "We're really stoked. There's been a huge effort put in from the whole team so it's a great result for all of us."

Described as a "coffee love story", the film was shot at Ozone Coffee Roasters in one day and took eight days to edit.

Writer Andy Bassett said he was blown away they had made the finals without being disqualified.

"Anyone watching the film can see we're all using coffee, which is actually a performance-enhancing drug," he said.

Mr Smith, a veteran 48-hour film festival entrant, is expecting some stiff competition, especially from fellow local Bruce Gatward-Cook and his entry The Forgotten Astronaut. "Bruce's film is one I'm expecting to be of a very high standard. But we are in the finals too, so I think we've got as much of a chance as anyone else."

He said there was always an apprehension which came with waiting to find out. However, he was confident in his team's efforts.

Other Taranaki finalists are 13-year-old Kalind Hutchinson with his film Paper Nation: For the Record, and Tess Novak with A Kiwi Legend.

Each film was required to include Tropfest's signature item, which this year, was a gumboot.

Tropfest is held around the world at locations in the United States, Israel, Australia, China and France.

Founder and director John Polson said he had been unsure what to expect from New Zealand's first Tropfest. However, any expectations had certainly been exceeded.

"The quality of films submitted this year was outstanding and it was a definite challenge to narrow down the field. I think the crowd at Tropfest New Zealand will be really pleased and excited by the films we've selected," he said.

The 16 finalists will be shown at The Bowl on January 27 followed by the announcement of New Zealand's first Tropfest winner.

2013 NZ TROPFEST FINALISTS

A Kiwi Legend - Tess Novak

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Booger - Tui Ruwhiu

Cappuccino Tango - Dave Smith

Hey Alba - Dawn Tuffery

Midnight at the Pier - Ingrid Saker

Paper Nation: For The Record - Kalind Hutchinson

Peers - Michael McAdam

Round Up - Gareth Van Niekerk

Sounds Perfect - Allan George

Sprung - Grant Lahood

Stop - Nicholas Garrett

The Forgotten Astronaut - Bruce Gatward-Cook

The Waiting - Shay Logan

Tunnel - Joel Garman

Vivid - Eli Mead Watch

Your Mouth - Cristobal Araus Lobos

- Taranaki Daily News

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