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Working with the New Zealand Film Commission

In 2017, the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) decided to merge their two websites into one online channel for supporting and promoting the New Zealand film industry. The new was built using the Sector D7 Govt Kit in just 16 weeks.

Screenshot of homepage

Homepage of

The New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) supports the local screen industry through making and promoting New Zealand films, attracting international productions, and developing careers for New Zealand filmmakers. 

Working with Sparks Interactive to combine the two NZFC websites - the locally-focused and the international attractions site - has allowed NZFC to use one main online channel to promote the New Zealand film industry to a range of audiences.

The short project timeline and the challenging list of tasks would not have been possible without the preconfigured features of the Sector D7 NZgovt Kit. 

After the successful launch in December 2017, NZFC and Sparks Interactive are committed to continuing the collaboration - including a review and user testing of the website after a year of it being live.

Working with open source

Supporting local open source projects is an important investment in the open source community and economy. The NZFC project uses local, open source solutions from end-to-end - it is built on Sector, a New Zealand Drupal distribution, and locally hosted on SiteHost (with cloud containers driven by open source technology).

The collaboration between NZFC and Sparks Interactive (the main Sector maintainer) is an excellent example of how businesses and the open source IT sector can collaborate to improve open source products and initiatives.  

Collaborating allowed the Sector project to grow and reach a wider audience, and both parties were able to gather a range of feedback from internal and external stakeholders. Much of the user input and feedback during the project discovery informed the next steps on the Sector roadmap, improving the project as a whole.  

Highlights of the project

Using Sector allowed NZFC to keep costs low and focus not on technology, but on user experience, content, and presentation.  

Sector’s flexible toolset allowed NZFC to keep their hierarchical menu tree flat and to move more than two-thirds of their content into a more flexible data-driven architecture. 

Screenshot of mobile size

New Zealand section of as viewed on smaller screens.

The new responsive frontend, built on the Sector Starter theme and the open source HTML, CSS and Javascript framework Bootstrap, allows NZFC to reach the widest possible audience, wherever they are and on whatever devices they use. 

Funding and news

The new Funding & Support section presents all funding information in one collection. It allows the user to access funding information via a search, filtered views and a funding wizard. 

The News & Events section allows the media to access latest news and funding decisions, and reminds applicants of upcoming deadlines.

Showcasing New Zealand and its films

The improved Film Library allows the user to browse through more than 650 films funded by NZFC since 1978. The modular Sector architecture also supports the international Showcase section, allowing NZFC to create and embed media galleries in editorial content.   

Sector’s advanced media and metadata management combined with the easy integration point to Solr (an open source search engine), allows NZFC to curate and maintain their large image library. For example, in Locations, location shots are collated into theme-based collections, and users can search the images by keywords. 

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