David Whittet Films Blog
Independent New Zealand Film Production

Back once more to the Gypsy Rose Caravan!

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Today marks the tenth full day we have spent working at the Gypsy Rose Caravan at Morere Hot Springs. The character change from Matakite to Kōkā and associated casting change from Cushla to Mariel has required numerous retakes. The caravan scenes play a vital role in both Amiri& Aroha and Amiri’s Child. Today we are reshooting key sequences between Aroha and Kōkā for the new cut of Amiri & Aroha, concentrating on Mariel Ceballos’ performance as Kōkā. Kristel has done some dialogue coaching with Mariel to give these scenes the dramatic intensity which the story requires.

I have commented before in this blog on the difficulties of shooting such complex scenes in the very confined space of the caravan. Oh to have a budget that would enable us to build a mock up in a studio! Today’s shoot was particularly challenging with heavy traffic noise and lawn mowers necessitating retake after retake! Mariel Ceballos found this particularly distracting and it proved a long and hard day’s shoot!

We remain eternally grateful to Marie Lepper, who owns the Gypsy Rose caravan for letting us take over her caravan on such a regular basis for the shooting. Despite the difficulties of filming, the caravan remains a tremendously atmospheric setting and greatly enhances the film.