Long-time film producer Larry Parr and writer Briar Grace-Smith have both become Officers of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to film and television.

Parr, Ngāti Raukawa and Muaūpoko, says he has been involved in the film industry since the 1970's when he released his first film, Sleeping Dogs, with Roger Donaldson.

 

"It's particularly pleasing to be there with Roger who was the reason I got into the industry and Ainsley who started out with me, it was great, and Briar, of course, we work together on 'Fish Skin Suit'."

 

He's someone who's been honoured by the Queen as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for being a film and television producer. 

He says he also mentored another film producer Ainsley Gardiner, who's also received been honoured by becoming a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

 

"On Saturday evening in Wairoa I told them it wasn't me that gave Ainsley her start it was my wife Lynn, because Lynn was the one that interviewed a number of potential interns and chose Ainsley to come and work with me."

 

Briar Grace-Smith is another film producer and writer who also worked together with Gardiner.

She's become an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for writing, producing films and theatre and says she's humbled to receive this honour.

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