Archives New Zealand’s holdings include a large amount of audiovisual material in a variety of formats, including 35mm and 16mm film, videotape in several formats (1”, 2”, ¾” UMatic, BetaSP), reel-to-reel audiotape, and more.
Our most significant audiovisual collection contains the output of the National Film Unit (NFU), a governmental film unit which operated between 1941 and 1989. The NFU produced hundreds of films, including the newsreel series Weekly Review (1941-1950) and Pictorial Parade (1952-1971), as well as fictional films, documentaries, promotional material, and instructional films. Topics included war, technology, Māori life, sport, art and architecture, farming, and other aspects of New Zealand life. Archives New Zealand holds the master negatives for films produced by the NFU, as well as viewing prints, magnetic sound mixes, and other materials relating to these productions.
Aside from the NFU films, Archives New Zealand also holds many collections of audiovisual material created or received by many Government departments in the course of their work, and Special Collections which we keep for their significant historical value under the Public Records Act 2005. Some notable collections are listed below.
Researchers may access our audiovisual collections via our YouTube channel, on the premises of Archives New Zealand, or by requesting titles in digital format. For all enquiries relating to audiovisual material, please use our general enquiries form. An archivist will then contact you and help advise you on access (for private research or professional use), pricing, and conditions of use.