Taranaki's 48 Hour Film Festival organisers pull out the judging big guns
One of the country's most successful actresses has been trawling through the Taranaki's latest offering of short films.
Antonia Prebble, best known for her roles on television series' Outrageous Fortune and Westside, has been enlisted as the celebrity judge for the region's leg of the HP 48 Hour Film Festival.
Other judges include New Plymouth District councillor Stacey Hitchcock, former New Plymouth mayor Andrew Judd, the original competition organiser Bruce Gatward-Cook and cinematographer Edward Aish.
Last week, 12 finalists were announced from the 20 teams who spent two days furiously writing, filming and editing a five minute film last month.
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Prebble was asked to come onboard as a judge by her friend and co-organiser of the event, Karlos Drinkwater.
She has since viewed the shortlisted films and said she was impressed with how many teams got involved.
"Particularly so many school teams," she said.
"It's exciting to see that young people are so passionate about film making."
It was important that people get involved in competitions such as these, she said.
"It is not an easy task, the demands of making a film in 48 hours are immense and so the fact that so many people are taking on the challenge means the passion for film making is alive and well in New Zealand, which is excellent news."
While critiquing the films, Prebble said she was on the look out for "innovative, original stories that were engaging to watch," and appropriate use of the respective criteria.
There was one film which was a particular stand out for the actress.
She said Team Hi Stranger's The Princess and the Neighbor was a well crafted story that was skilfully executed.
Co-organiser Anand Rose said the standard of films was up this year.
"There's definitely some really good, well shot films.
"And there's a lot more young teams."
While there would be one regional winner announced at the upcoming finals, Rose said there was only small chance they would go onto the nationals.
"Because we're a smaller region we're never guaranteed a place."
The films will screen and the winner announced on Monday, September 25 at Event Cinemas in New Plymouth. Tickets are available on Eventfinda.
Other finalists are 70 Media - Survive Together, Bread 'n' Butter Productions - Lamb-shank Redemption, Currie Street Creatives - Charlie Echo Alpha, Muse Crew - Wish Granted, Pastafarian Productions - ESP, Playhaus Productions - Prodigal Daughter, The All Good - Last Christmas I gave you my Heart, The Tanked Engines - The Quick and Dirty, The Wet Dreamers - Rock Hard, Through the Lens Films - ET Eaten, TTKLAYMM - Out Stare.