Berlin According to Producer Chelsea Winstanley

Chelsea Winstanley - Getty - H 2019
Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images

The producer of 'What We Do in the Shadows' and 'Merata: How Mum Decolonized the Screen' gives her take on the fest.

“Berlin for me seems incredibly glamorous,” says New Zealand producer Chelsea Winstanley, a festival and market regular, who began attending the festival as a Berlinale Talent Campus attendee (“I was a baby, they really took me up and supported me,” she recalls) and returned with Boy and What We Do in The Shadows, in 2010 and 2014, respectively, from director and partner Taika Waititi.

Winstanley packaged Waititi’s upcoming comedy Jojo Rabbit —in which the Thor: Ragnarok helmer also stars as Adolf Hitler — in Berlin. This year she returns with the documentary Merata: How Mum Decolonized The Screen, which screens in Berlin’s Native sidebar for indigenous cinema.

“I get really star-struck in Berlin, it’s just so elegant and glam,” she says, “I remember being at a Studio Babelsberg party and just running into Christoph Waltz. Or being at the SoHo House in 2013 with my baby, waiting for someone, and George Clooney walks by. ‘What a gorgeous baby!’ he says, picks her up and kisses her. I thought: I’m never going to wash her again! Don’t tell anyone: I still haven’t.”

This story first appeared in The Hollywood Reporter's Feb. 8 daily issue at the Berlin Film Festival.