Oscars: New Zealand Selects ‘One Thousand Ropes’ for Foreign-Language Category

Courtesy of Berlin International Film Festival

The film is writer-director Tusi Tamasese’s follow-up to NZ’s 2012 Oscar entry, 'The Orator'

New Zealand has selected Tusi Tamasese’s Samoan-language feature One Thousand Ropes for the foreign-language category at the 90th Academy Awards.

The film, Tamasese’s second for Oscar consideration, had its world premiere in the Panorama section at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, where THR reviewer David Rooney called it “a deeply felt drama,” where Tamasese, “sustains the subdued intensity with impressive control.”

Written and directed by Tamasese and produced by Catherine Fitzgerald, One Thousand Ropes is the story of a Samoan family living in suburban New Zealand, re-connecting and putting to rest the ghosts that haunt them.

A committee of experienced film industry representatives, chaired by New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) CEO, Dave Gibson, with Niki Caro, Keisha Castle-Hughes, Ngila Dickson, Mike Horton, John Gilbert, Grant Major, Lee Tamahori and David Coulson, endorsed the film as NZ’s Oscar entry.

Starring Uelese Petaia, Frankie Adams, Beulah Koale and Sima UraleOne Thousand Ropes is Tamasese’s follow-up to his feature debut, The Orator, which was shot in Samoa and made the shortlist of nine films in the 2012 Oscar foreign-language category.

Its New Zealand’s fifth entry onto the category.  

One Thousand Ropes will screen in the London Film Festival and Australia's Adelaide Film Festival next month. International sales for the film are being handled by Mongrel Media.