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By Stephen Heard
June 10, 2019

Second Unit

Go behind-the-scenes onto a fictional film set.
By Stephen Heard
June 10, 2019

Just as the American reboot of What We Do in the Shadows hits the small screen, a new immersive film experience has been announced to take over the Wellington waterfront.

Created by local production company Tāwhiri and design agency Koko, Second Unit is a live-action experience inspired by famous films, and the first event will take place on a huge custom-built set on the waterfront from 13 June 2019. The film inspiring the first outing is the vampire mockumentary created by Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement.

The filmmaking pair aren't directly involved with the live production. Rather, the event has been pulled together by a collective of Kiwi creatives, including Cuba Street Carnival founder Chris Morley-Hall, Anna Wooles from Koko, set designer John Verryt, and theatre-makers Stella Reid, Benjamin Henson and Andrew Foster.

Dubbed an immersive experience, Second Unit takes the audience the behind-the-scenes onto a fictional film set, where nothing is quite as it seems. The plot and design of the show are being kept secret to maximise the surprise and impact. With more than 120 cast, creatives and crew, it is more hands on than your traditional theatre show, inviting the audience to play and explore, either with a group of friends or as a solo adventurer. Entry to the chaotic film set will be staggered in ten minute intervals.

Tāwhiri's Executive Director Meg Williams says attendees can expect cameos from a few famous friends from the original WWDITS. "It's an experience that can be enjoyed by both fans of the film and anyone looking for a freaky night out."

The show has been given the green light for a three-year run, with each season inspired by a different film.

Image: Matt Grace.

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