TAKE HOME PAY PREMIERE
Stallone Vaiaoga-Iosasa's latest comedy to hit the big screen - Take Home Pay - had its premiere last night at The Civic with the Pasifika community out in full force. The movie premiere's tonight in Wellington before it opens to the public on the 5th of September. Check out the trailer above
We spoke to Writer/Director Stallone, Producer Abba Rose Vaiagoa-Ioasa and one of the lead actors Vito Vito before the premiere last night.
Why did you want to make this movie?
Stallone: I wanted to cover 2 main things, one is money - how money works at least to some degree in our community - and also the importance of innovation. I think whats in the film, how the film was made and what goes into making the film, it's an imporant theme in terms of we're always talking about protecting our culture and moving forward.
How we achieve that is in line with how we nurture innovation and how we nurture doing something different outside the box, reacting to the changing climate in a much more pro-active way. It's something that'll dawn on you after the film. In terms of film making I wanted to build on what we'd achieved before. So we've had 'Three Wise Cousins' & 'Hibiscus & Ruthless' - different types of comedy and in order to win your audience over you've got to do something different so this is an action/comedy genre.
It's harder because as soon as you say 'Action' everyone has a certain expectation so it's about meeting that expectation while having the budget that doesn't normally allow for an action film."
Why did you feel it was important to tell this particular story?
"I think this particular story is timely and it's also very different in terms of a lot of things. We cover seasonal workers and their place in it and in many ways with seasonal work, I see it as the continuation of migration, it's just a different form now. Before it was coming over to be Permanent Residents here but now times have changed and the political climate is such that you bring workers over and you take the money back.
Take Home Pay is all about what you do with that money that you can take home and what happens to it afterwards. I felt that it's something unique to put into a film. I haven't had first hand experience with it - the first time I picked fruit was when we made this film (laughs) but I knew it was something really important. It's a big earner in terms of if you can't migrate to a country what ways can you send money home once you're in.
NZ is always on the lookout for a primary workforce, it's a case of lots of work but very little interest locally. It wasn't until I put this film out that I realised that many people don't know that seasonal work is such a thing. Not just in Samoa but Tonga, Vanuatu - all the different islands. For me the a bigger picture is how it affects the demand on families here if we have to send money back. But if they've come here to make money then it reduces that demand and how there's a flow on affect in the community.
Overall it was doing something different to entertain the people without compromising the message"
How is it working with your family?
Abba Rose: It was a blessing actually. They've been so much help especially when you're working on such a small budget and it's an independent film you need all the hands we can get to help make it easier for us and to get it to the finish line. A lot of people say that it's really hard to work with siblings but it feels more like I'm working with my best friend rather than my brother to be honest. We're still laughing from when we started the script right through to the finished product and whenever we have arguments they're constructive arguments and we know how to deal with each other.
How was your experience shooting Take Home Pay?
Vito: I've always loved acting, it's good money (laughs) but not only that I want to represent my country with something. I got to work with Tofiga and this journey with him was fun. Every time I'd feel down or anything, once he speaks everybody laughs. My favourite part of the movie was shooting the 'Lima Tau' scenes.