The Queen Street Riots – among the most divisive and violent moments in New Zealand’s recent history – are to be brought to life on TV ONE’s Sunday Theatre.
The famous incident in 1932 in which union leader Jimmy Edwards was batoned to the ground by police forms the focus of a new local drama, seen through the eyes of Edward’s 13 year old son James who watched his father’s collapse from just metres away.
Unusually, the drama will incorporate documentary footage of the real James Edwards, who recalled his vivid memories for the cameras shortly before he died at the age of 85.
The drama “Life’s a Riot” is the second project to be confirmed from a total of four local Sunday Theatre dramas that will receive funding support from NZ On Air.
It’s a joint venture by two production houses – Just The Ticket (Ross and Carmel Jennings) and Seannachie Productions (Aileen O’Sullivan).
It’s directed by Ian Mune and written by Dean Parker, who has illustrated James Edwards’ family story with both the music and the black humour of the Depression era.
Life’s a Riot is due to go into pre-production shortly, and is expected to go to air on Sunday Theatre in 2009.