The Tattooist New Zealand Feature Film
The Tattooist opened in cinemas nationwide on Thursday August 30.
THE TATTOOIST, a supernatural thriller, was made by Singaporean and New Zealand co-production partners, from a New Zealand-originated script on locations in New Zealand and Singapore. The story centres on Samoan spiritual beliefs, in which the barrier between our world and the spirit world is very thin, leading events in one to have serious and chilling repercussions in the other.
American tattoo artist Jake Sawyer (Behr) wanders the world, exploring and exploiting ethnic themes in his tattoo designs. At a tattoo expo in Singapore, he gets his first glimpse at the exotic world of traditional Samoan tattoo (tatau), and, in a thoughtless act, unwittingly unleashes a powerful angry spirit. In his devastating journey into Pacific mysticism, Jake must find a way to save his new love, Sina (Blake) and recover his own soul.
THE TATTOOIST is an official New Zealand/Singapore co-production between Eyeworks Touchdown and MediaCorp Raintree Pictures of Singapore, financed by the New Zealand Film Commission, Daydream Productions, MediaCorp Raintree Pictures, supported by the Singapore Film Commission under the Project Development Scheme and executive produced by Julie Christie, Daniel Yun, James Dean and Paul Davis. The producer is Robin Scholes (Once Were Warriors, Crooked Earth), director is Peter Burger and screenwriters are Matthew Grainger & Jonathan King based on an idea by Vela Manusaute. Co-producers are Ng San San and Chan Pui Yin. Australasian distribution is by Buena Vista International, international sales by NZ Film.
Filmed in 2006 on locations in Auckland Central, South Auckland and Singapore and studios in Waitakere City, THE TATTOOIST is director Peter Burger’s first feature, building on his strong career to date in short film (Fishskin Suit, Turangawaewae) , commercials and TV drama (Outrageous Fortune, Mataku, The Strip). His creative team includes legendary director of photography Leon Narbey (Whale Rider, No 2), production designer Gary Mackay (The Locals, Savage Honeymoon), costume designer Gavin McLean (The Maori Merchant of Venice), editor Paul Maxwell (Sione’s Wedding, Rain), and composer Peter Scholes (Once Were Warriors, Desperate Remedies). The visual effects are by Peter McCully of Albedo FX (Perfect Creature, Vertical Limit).