Out of 195 countries in the world, 67 have English as their official language. This means 1.5 billion people speak English – that’s 20% of the world’s population.

English speaking New Zealand, at the bottom of the world, has a modest population of just 5 million people. Taking these facts into consideration, it’s amazing how many kiwi actors have made a name for themselves in American movies. Although Wellington born Russell Crowe (Gladiator, Robin Hood, Noah etc) and Sam Neil who moved to NZ when he was 7 and is a Kiwi citizen, (Jurassic Park, Jurassic World etc) are the best known New Zealand actors working in Hollywood, there are a surprising number of other Kiwi actors appearing in American (and British) movies and TV shows. We must also remember, Kiwi directors such as Andrew Adamson (Chronicles of Narnia, Shrek) Roger Donaldson (Cocktail, The Bounty) Peter Jackson (Lord of the Rings) Niki Caro (The Zookeeper’s Wife, Mulan) and the current hot property, Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok, JoJo Rabbit, Thor: Love and Thunder 2022 release) have all helmed Hollywood movies. It is quite extraordinary that a small country isolated near the bottom of the Pacific Ocean can produce such a relatively high number of successful actors and directors in the cutthroat world of Hollywood entertainment. read more