//016 Chelsea Winstanley, Oscar-nominated producer + filmmaker

May 14, 2019


Chelsea Winstanley (Ngāti Ranginui) is a filmmaker. She directed the documentary Tame Iti: The man behind the moko, and co-directed Waru, the heart-wrenching film about child abuse, made by 8 Māori female directors. Her producer credits include What We do in the Shadows, and the short film Night Shift. And most recently, she helped Hepi Mita make a documentary about his mum, the pioneering Merata Mita – sharing the stories of how she decolonised the screen.

Now Based in Los Angeles with her husband and children, Chelsea is a world away from her home town of Mt Maunganui. And while there might be a few more red carpets in her life these days, this Te Puna girl has never forgotten how she got there.

Today, we talk about that journey. She shares what it was like being a 21 year old single māmā having to rely on a benefit, through to the life changing car accident that forced her to have to learn to walk again.

She also talks about the realities of the film industry and the importance of indigenous representation on our screens.


If I don’t follow my passion and really give myself the time that I need, and allow myself to live the dreams I want to live, then what kind of role model am I to my babies?

Don’t want to miss the next NUKU100 podcast and image series? Sign up to our newsletter and we will deliver the link direct to your inbox. You can also subscribe on Spotify or Apple Podcasts, just search for ‘NUKU’.

NUKU preorder book banner