Aussie Indie Production Company Cordell Jigsaw Zapruder Acquires New Zealand’s Greenstone TV

'Go Back To Where You Came From'

The production company of international Emmy-nominated docuseries 'Go Back To Where You Came From' will boost its catalogue with over 100 popular NZ titles.

SYDNEY -- Australia’s largest locally owned production company, Cordell Jigsaw Zapruder (CJZ) has acquired NZ indie Greenstone TV, one of the most prolific producers of factual programming in New Zealand.

The acquisition of Greenstone comes as CJZ continues to develop its slate of original programming and aims to "create a powerful platform to continue delivering original programming in a market dominated by European and US formats," according to CJZ managing director Nick Murray.

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Greenstone TV has been producing documentaries, drama and factual programming for NZ and Australian audiences for nineteen years. Its catalogue of over 100 programs, with fourteen in production this year, includes popular factual series like The Zoo, Highway Patrol, Coastwatch, Motorway Patrol and Serious Crash Unit. It is currently in production on returning series of Highway Patrol, Renters, Motorway Patrol, Neighbours at War, Border Patrol, Dog Squad, Highway Cops and new observational documentary series’ Coastwatch Australia and Showtime.

Greenstone’s titles will strengthen CJZ’s existing catalogue of original programs including Bondi Rescue, the Gruen franchise (Planet, Nation and Sweat) and the international-Emmy nominated docuseries Go Back to Where You Came From.

"This is an important step for both companies," Murray said. "We have a huge amount of respect for John Harris and his team and the quality of Greenstone’s programs. Their creative output dovetails perfectly with the successful and original content we provide networks here in Australia and internationally."

"It felt like the right time to make this move," added Greenstone founder John Harris. "We share similar values, high standards and a deep respect for our production staff. It‘s a perfect fit."

Harris will continue with Greenstone in an advisory role, while general manager Bryan Hall, head of production Andrea Lamb and financial controller Glenda Paterson will remain at the helm of the company.

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The acquisition marks a period of significant growth for CJZ, created in 2012 after the merger of Cordell Jigsaw Productions and Zapruder's other films. Zapruder's founder Andrew Denton announced his retirement from the television business earlier this year. Last week Matt Campbell, former programming director at national broadcaster SBS Television and MD of Shine Australia, was appointed CEO of CJZ. At the same time, CJZ is expanding into drama production with the development of a series for the Nine Network based on the life of the world’s richest woman, Australian mining magnate Gina Hancock.