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Fresh, nature’s bounty and a generous helping hand… New Zealand’s Christchurch opens a world of possibilities

Located on the east coast of the South Island of New Zealand, Christchurch is the country’s third-largest urban area. It lays one-third of the way down the South Island’s east coast, just north of Banks Peninsula, which itself lies within the formal limits of Christchurch.

Christchurch is a city of contrasts. It is renowned for its beauty. A growing cosmopolitan ambience also adds a touch of excitement without overt flashiness. There is nowhere else in the world where within two hours of an international airport you can find a world-class Alpine ski resort, golf, bungee jump, rafting, mountain biking, hot-air ballooning, wind surfing, whale watching and visit world class wineries and gardens.

The city centre is comfortingly compact and the most delightful central feature is the gently winding Avon River. On its grassy banks lined with poplars and weeping willows, office workers and visitors join street entertainers, seagulls and ducks for lunch in the sun.

Internationally famed ‘The Garden City’, Christchurch’s well-established expansive parks and public gardens owe much to the planning and foresight of the city’s founding fathers. The centrally-located 161 hectare Hagley Park, the Botanic Gardens, the four leafy inner-city avenues, Victoria Square and spectacular gardens such as Mona Vale on the banks of the River Avon bear testimony to this legacy.

Two large floral festivals occur each year, The Festival of Flowers is held in February each year and the Ellerslie International Flower Show is held every March. Both are popular festivals and it is a great time of the year as the city is a blaze of colours for filming.


Christchurch has a dry, temperate climate, with mean daily maximum air temperatures of 22.5 °C in January and 11.3 °C in July. Christchurch has an oceanic climate. The summer climate is often moderated by a sea breeze from the Northeast.

In winter, it is common for the temperature to fall below 0 °C at night. There are on average 70 days of ground frost per year. Snow falls occur on average once or twice a year in the hill suburbs and about once or twice every two years on the plain, about half as much.

Early Development Fund

Teams with a producer attached may receive up to a cumulative total of
$ 40,000 via EDF (including any historic Writer Development Loan or existing SDF funding). Individual applications are generally for tranches of no more than $ 20,000.

Teams should be aware that an initial investment in a project marks recognition of potential and doesn’t imply continued support. The script will need to make significant advances at each stage if the project is to continue NZFC-funded progress towards advanced development.


1. Producers working with first time feature film writers are eligible to apply with a draft screenplay.

2. Producers working with writers with at least one credit on a feature film that has been released theatrically by a distributor, or who have significant experience writing for another dramatic medium.

3. Writers and directors with at least one credit on a feature film that has been released theatrically by a distributor, or who have significant experience writing for another dramatic medium.

Application Requirements

Applications should be made using the Early Development Fund and applicants should discuss their application with the Development Team prior to lodging to get guidance on what materials are required.

Large Budget Screen Production Grant

Producers who have a level of experience appropriate to the nature and scale of their project in film drama production, development, acquisition, distribution and/or exhibition may apply for funding

The government introduced the Large Budget Screen Production Grant (LBSP Grant) in June 2003 to provide an addi- tional financial incentive for the production of both foreign and domestic large budget film and television productions in New Zealand. In 2007 the Post, Digital and Visual Effects Grant (PDV Grant) was introduced to specifically foster capacity and new business development for large budget PDV Production in New Zealand.

The Grant provides a 15 per cent rebate on total qualifying expenditure where the expenditure in New Zealand is:

• NZ $ 15million or more for the LBSP Grant, or

• NZ $ 3 million or more, but does not exceed NZ $ 15 million, for the PDV Grant

The Ministry of Economic Development is evaluating the grant during 2011-12 as part of the government’s screen sector work program.

The evaluation will review the Grant’s effectiveness in attracting large budget productions to New Zealand and ensure it is well targeted, complementary and effective in supporting the government’s objectives for the sector.

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