Perfect Woman film plan

Wanaka's Perfect Woman competition originator Stew Burt, pictured being shorn by Shelley-Mae Brown at the weekend, is involved in the planning of a movie featuring the competition. Photo by Mark Price.
Wanaka's Perfect Woman competition originator Stew Burt, pictured being shorn by Shelley-Mae Brown at the weekend, is involved in the planning of a movie featuring the competition. Photo by Mark Price.
A movie using Wanaka's Perfect Woman competition as a backdrop is under development, a script already having been completed by 2012 Arts Foundation Laureate Fiona Samuels.

The story is a romantic comedy set on an Otago high country station, in which the two leading female characters square off in the competition while also hoping to win the heart of the leading man.

It is being pitched as a movie in the tradition of Bridget Jones's Diary and Bridesmaids.

A proposal provided to the Otago Daily Times says: " ...it's a comedy, it's a love story, it's got mountains, helicopters, jet-boats, horses, can-do southern gals in tight jeans, beer, axes, romance, incredible scenery and approximately 10,000 sheep. Pretty much something for everyone."

Samuels' husband, Murray Keane, a film and television director, was in Wanaka over Labour Weekend after the two-day competition.

Both he and competition originator Stew Burt confirmed the movie idea was being floated, although finance was not yet in place.

Keane told the ODT discussions were under way with a brewery and it was hoped funding could be secured from the New Zealand Film Commission and private investors.

Both Samuels and Keane have worked in recent years on television series such as Outrageous Fortune, The Almighty Johnsons and Rude Awakenings.

Samuels also wrote the recent acclaimed TV movie Bliss - The Beginning of Katherine Mansfield.

The proposed movie's independent producer is Rachel Jean, former head of drama and comedy for TV3.

mark.price@odt.co.nz