Michael Bennett: multi-award-winning author, screenwriter and director

NZSA Auckland Branch Meeting
Friday 6 August
from 5pm, meeting starts 6.15pm
The Coffee Club, 42 High Street, Auckland CBD

Join us in August when Weng Wai Chan asks: Why hasn’t Michael Bennett been snapped up by Hollywood yet?


The Auckland Branch is thrilled to welcome Michael, hot off the success of his TVNZ show, Vegas, (a crime series adapted from NZSA member Ray Berard’s book Inside The Black Horse).

Michael Bennett (Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Whakaue) is an award-winning screenwriter, filmmaker, and author. Michael’s second feature-length drama, In Dark Places, tells the story of Teina Pora’s imprisonment for 21 years for crimes he did not commit. The film is based on Michael’s book In Dark Places which won the Ngaio Marsh Award for best non-fiction book, and Michael made an award-winning documentary about Teina’s story. Michael’s short films Cow and Kerosene Creek screened at numerous film festivals including Cannes, Toronto, Berlin, London, and New York, and his debut feature Matariki premiered at Toronto Film Festival and won awards in New Zealand and internationally.

Michael is showrunner of Vegas, a 6 part crime thriller series shot entirely in Rotorua that he co-created, wrote and executive produced.

As well as his own film and TV and book work, Michael works in communities around New Zealand with Script to Screen working with locals to tell their stories on film, he works with developing filmmakers through the NZ Film Commission and Ngā Aho Whakaari and was head of the screenwriting programme at South Seas Film School for six years. Michael’s second book, Helen and the Go-Go Ninjas (a post-apocalyptic time travel graphic novel co-authored with Ant Sang) was published in June 2018.

Our meeting will be held in The Coffee Club, 42 High Street, Auckland CBD (on the edge of Freyberg Square) – they are staying open late just for us!
We don’t require a koha but instead encourage everyone to buy drink and food which suits your budget and dietary requirements. Please support their business as they are allowing us to use the space for no cost.

Parking is available just up the road in the Victoria St carpark and The Coffee Club is an easy walk from the train or ferry.

Final Note: The Auckland Branch works to create meetings which are inclusive and welcoming. The meetings aim to be a great introduction to NZSA for new members as well as a place of community for all. For this reason:

  • the business part of the meeting is kept brief and finer points about the running of the branch are managed at committee level. No new business is added to the agenda on the night.
  • all members are expected to act in a professional, appropriate manner.

Thank you from all members.