Classic TV series restored and available online

  • Hon Clare Curran

The landmark 1970s television series Winners & Losers is now restored and available free to view for all New Zealanders to appreciate and enjoy, the Minister for Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Hon Clare Curran announced today.

Winners & Losers broke new ground when it screened in 1976 and now NZ On Screen is ensuring this iconic series is freely available to new audiences,” Clare Curran said.

“With this series, Roger Donaldson and Ian Mune took these New Zealand stories to overseas audiences and established our reputation for quality production and drama on the world stage.

“These historically important films broke new ground in the approach to production, financing and marketing and today 43 years on a similar collaborative approach sees these visual gems restored for all New Zealanders to enjoy.”

The restoration of the series was completed by Park Road Post Productions with funding from New Zealand Lottery Grants Board and support from Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.

“It’s important we’re able to tell our stories. They reflect and champion our distinctive culture and it’s through our stories we connect with our past and with each other.

“Budget 2018 set aside $15 million in 2018/19 for quality New Zealand programming and journalism. They are crucial to our national identity and need ongoing, sustainable resourcing,” Clare Curran said. 

“The funding means any recommendations the Public Media Advisory Group (PMAG) makes, and that the Coalition Government accepts, can be implemented this year. There will be further funding allocated for full implementation in future Budgets.

“PMAG may recommend increased Government investment in Radio New Zealand (RNZ) and NZ On Air to support public media and programming.

“NZ on Screen is funded by NZ On Air and many of these stories would be difficult to access without the work NZ On Screen is doing to digitise them and bring them to a wider audience through captioning.

“NZ On Screen has recently adapted its media player to be compatible with captions for the deaf and hard of hearing and is steadily adding captions to classic titles. Winners and Losers will join these, thanks to the assistance of Able, which like NZ On Screen, is another NZOA-funded organisation.

“The restored  series is a credit to Roger Donaldson and Ian Mune and today’s initiative is a further example of screen sector organisations working together to secure the legacy of the industry.

“I’m thrilled to make this announcement today as we celebrate NZ On Screen’s 10-year contribution to our screen industry, successfully bringing together technology and digital media in this new initiative,” Clare Curran said.

Winners & Losers: 

The seven 30-minute films are based on the work of acclaimed New Zealand writers and are connected by characters who are either succeeding or facing challenges in their lives.

The films are:

  • The Woman at the Store (Katherine Mansfield),
  • Shining with the Shiner (John A. Lee),
  • A Lawful Excuse (Barry Crump),
  • Blues for Miss Laverty (Maurice Duggan),
  • After the Depression (Maurice Shadbolt),
  • A Great Day (Frank Sargeson),
  • and Big Brother, Little Sister (Witi Ihimaera).