Story: Television

Shortland Street

This is a clip from the first episode of Shortland Street, which began screening five days a week in 1992. The soap opera concerned the staff and patients of the fictional Shortland Street hospital. It was originally funded by NZ On Air, but became self-supporting after four years and was exported to over 20 countries. The programme provided training for many actors who went on to success in film and other television work and helped establish professionalism in New Zealand television drama production. It was also notable for the central role of Māori and Pacific characters in the drama. The first episode became known for the immortal comment addressed to the newly arrived doctor, Hone Ropata (played by Temuera Morrison), 'You're not in Guatemala now, Dr Ropata.' 

View the full episode on the NZ On Screen website.

About this item

South Pacific Pictures

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How to cite this page:

Trisha Dunleavy, 'Television - Television drama', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/video/45706/shortland-street (accessed 20 November 2017)

Story by Trisha Dunleavy, published 22 Oct 2014