Phoebe Driver

Achievements: Special Jury Award for the Best Student Film at the Independent Talents | International Film Festival USA

What course did you complete? NZ Diploma of Screen Production – specialising in Documentary Directing and Research

Current role/Employer: Greenstone Productions – casual

How did you find yourself at South Seas Film & TV School?

I had been working in an art gallery for a couple of years, and I wanted to do something different.  I was really interested in film, but I wasn’t sure if I had the nerve to be in the industry.  I felt a bit daunted by the prospect of opening myself up to it, but still I plunged in, and it has been the best decision of my life.

How did you find the programme?

I really enjoyed the programme, I found likeminded people, everyone was really cool and friendly, and we were all driving towards the same thing.  The course really helped build my confidence, and as I progressed, things became clearer and I found I could do things which I really enjoyed.  The experience has changed my career direction, it’s really satisfying finding something that you love and you’re good at!

Your final project at the end of course attracted some attention, tell us about that…

I was really surprised to win the Special Jury Award for the Best Student Film at the Independent Talents – part of the International Film Festival in Indiana USA, and then I just found out I’m a finalist in the Changing Face International Film Festival in Sydney.  So just thrilled!

My film project grew from a random observation when I was walking around Auckland, and realised that toilets, although a public facility, were often overlooked and were an underappreciated necessity.  I ended up celebrating the facility by telling the story from the perspective of five people who spend more time in public toilets than the average person.  Hannah – a heritage toilet enthusiast; Lucy – a sufferer of agoraphobia; Rob – the cleaning supervisor, and his colleagues in the field Zee and Nui.

What would be your dream job one day?

I’d love to direct factual television productions.   Right now I’m working on a casual basis at Greenstone Productions doing production assistant work and transcribing, so I’m really thrilled to be given this opportunity as well.

What’s a life lesson you’ve learnt during your year at South Seas?

Try everything, even if you’re scared…be brave and take opportunities that present themselves.