Bret McKenzie (left), of The Flight of the Conchords, and
Hamish Blake, of Australia's Hamish and Andy, will star in
Robert Sarkies' latest film Two Little Boys. Photo
The man responsible for putting Dunedin on the big screen
may have shunned his hometown for his next film venture, but
has vowed to return.
Robert Sarkies, director of Scarfies and Out of the Blue, has
started work on Two Little Boys, which will be shot in
Invercargill and the Catlins next month.
The film is based on brother Duncan's novel of the same name,
which is the story of best friends Nige and Deano, of
Dunedin, whose relationship hits a rocky patch on a road trip
The novel started life three years ago as a screenplay, but
after it was shown to publisher Penguin, it became a book in
However, Robert Sarkies decided to reverse the road trip for
the film, basing the characters in Invercargill and having
them drive to the Catlins.
"Because we've had so much support from Invercargill, we've
decided to relocate," he said.
He insisted the decision was not about barriers, merely
support, with Invercargill keen to recreate the experience it
had with the The World's Fastest Indian.
"We did really want to shoot it in Dunedin, but when we
talked to both Dunedin and Invercargill, Invercargill made it
easy for us to shoot there."
But his fondness for Dunedin remained: "I'll be back".
The opportunity to film in the Catlins was also exciting, as
the area was "completely unexplored" in feature film, and was
full of childhood memories.
"It's one of the gems of the country and we are looking
forward to putting it on the big screen," he said.
Backing from the region had been great, with those in the
Owaka community "embracing" the film.
Aside from support, Sarkies believed the characters were
better suited to Invercargill.
"The film should find the place and they should be a good
Bret McKenzie, of The Flight of the Conchords, and Hamish
Blake, of Australian comedy duo Hamish and Andy, have been
cast as Nige and Deano.
Sarkies said they "totally suit the roles" and "can't help
but be funny".
"The character I play accidentally runs over a Scandinavian
backpacker and then it's about him and his friend trying to
get rid of the body," McKenzie said, and described Two Little
Boys as a dark comedy.
He had been looking at local and international scripts since
the Conchords, and said this one was the best script he had
seen in two years.
"I think Kiwis will like it just because it's about New
Zealanders. Anyone who has had a friend will like this movie,
and if they haven't had a friend, they will be interested to
see what it's like having a friend."
Pre-production for the film started two weeks ago, with
filming to start next month and take seven weeks.
- Additional reporting The New Zealand Herald