Craig Hall as Tim McKinnel

What was your previous knowledge of Teina’s story before you got this role?

I knew very little of Teina’s story before auditioning for In Dark Places. I remember that image of him from the newspaper wearing the bandana. An image that I have come to learn probably helped seal his fate in the minds of the public.

What were the challenges of playing a role such as this?

The challenges of any role are always to be able to connect personally with the truth and emotions of the character.

In this case I had the pleasure of getting to know the real Tim. So the challenge was to manage my own expectations of honouring him and not getting caught up with a mimicry.

Why do you think it is important to tell the story of Teina Pora’s experience with the NZ justice system?

It is important to tell Teina’s story to illuminate the problems within our justice system and try and make sure this doesn’t happen again. 

It is important for us to question what we see and hear in the media and from the organisations we entrust to bring justice for those in our community.

How did you prepare for your role?

The main bulk of my preparation was getting schooled on the ins and outs of Teina’s case.

I quickly realised how thorough and forensic Tim was in investigating the case and knew I had to know as much as I could get my hands on. 

What was the most memorable aspect of being part of this experience?

Being a part of this experience has been memorable from the very first conversation with Michael, to meeting Tim and Teina, to every single moment within the filming process. 

There was an inherent feeling of importance, respect, and community within every aspect of this production. A credit to everyone’s belief in the importance of telling this story.

In Dark Places premieres Sunday 22 July at 8.30pm on TVNZ 1.