Super-mum’s latest film casts net around family
begun filming her next project yet, but it is already a major family enterprise.
The former Wellington writer and director has roped in her children and extended family for her next short film Food for Thought.
‘‘All my family have put their hands up,’’ Robins said.
‘‘My five children are involved and several of their cousins and good friends.’’
Food for Thought is a tale of family members coming together to support their mother after their father’s sudden death.
Based on Sue McCauley’s short story Assassin Bug, it demonstrates Robins’ passion for telling everyday stories about women and the humour and tenacity they use to survive in a man’s world.
Robins said films should be made from a wide variety of perspectives, including male, female, young and old.
‘‘ Only 8 per cent of filmmakers are women, which is quite a major minority,’’ she said.
‘‘We need to tell stories from women’s perspectives or, in my case, from an older woman’s perspective.’’
Robins’ film experience dates back to her marriage with Goodbye Pork Pie director Geoff Murphy, who was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit this year for his contribution to the arts.
Although based in Hawke’s Bay, Robins grew up in Wellington and still calls the capital home.
Robins’ daughter Robin Murphy said her mother was ‘‘ the original super- mum’’ and an unsung hero of the New Zealand film industry.
‘‘She’s been a constant force since the 1970s,’’ she said.
‘‘She started out supporting her former husband, Geoff Mur- phy, on his films – combining roles as production manager, costumier and caterer, while simultaneously taking care of her growing family.’’
In the mid-1980s she stepped from her supporting role into the limelight.
She created the short film Instincts and television dramas O’Reilly’s Luck and Matrons of Honour.
In 2012 she worked with directors Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland on their debut feature film Shopping.
She also wrote and directed the short film Dying Light, which appeared in film festivals around the world.
Now in her 70s, Robins works as a script supervisor and contributed to Hope and Wire – Gaylene Preston’s series about post-earthquake Christchurch, which screened on TV3 this month.
Food for Thought will be filmed in Wellington next month, provided $10,000 had been raised through crowdfunding site Boosted.
‘‘There’s got to be something to keep me busy,’’ she said.
To support the project visit boosted.org.nz/projects/food-forthought-a-short-film.