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Expedition to the Great White Continent

Expedition to the Great White Continent

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  • Thu 22 Nov ’12, 7:00pm
  • Sat 24 Nov ’12, 7:00pm


Nga Taonga Sound & Vision, 84 Taranaki St, Te Aro, Wellington Show map


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Public: $8.00
  • Concession: $6.00

Related Artists:

Air Supply

The Travelling Film Show at the Film Archive.

Sir Edmund Hillary features in this film programme centring on the 1956-1957 Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition. The films depict various stages of the journey - beginning with pre-expedition training of men and dogs in the Southern Alps, followed by the expedition overland via the South Pole, and concluding with the Endeavour and men’s homecoming to New Zealand in 1958.


Sledges South!" (1957, 15 mins)

Sir Edmund Hillary, George Lowe and a group of colleagues prepare for the 1956-57 Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition. In the Southern Alps, the party test the dogs, transport, air supply, and themselves in preparation for the expedition.

 On the eve of their departure in Christchurch, Sir Edmund lays a wreath on the memorial of Antarctic explorer Captain Scott. In memory of Captain Cook, the first man to explore Antarctic waters, the expedition ship was named Endeavour. After a year of preparation and training, and two weeks of loading, the Endeavour is visited by HRH Duke of Edinburgh prior to an official farewell from the wharf. Produced and directed by Roger Mirams and John O’Shea.

"The Great Achievement" (1958, 33 mins)

New Zealand’s part in the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition and in the International Geophysical Year, Sir Edmund Hillary’s dramatic dash to the South Pole and his meeting with Sir Vivian Fuchs are highlights. Various other features of Antarctic life are also shown; work with dog teams; dredging the sea floor, tractor trains; aircraft landing in snow, the habits of seals, penguins, and killer whales. A National Film Unit production.

"The Homecoming" (1958, 9 mins)

Documents the return of the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition to New Zealand. The Endeavour, carrying the leader of the expedition Sir Vivian Fuchs, Sir Edmund Hillary and others, returns to Wellington. Celebrations follow on the wharf and the men attend a Parliamentary reception, hosted by acting Prime Minster C. F. Skinner. Sir Vivian Fuchs and Sir Edmund Hillary talk about their expedition in Antarctica. Produced and directed by Roger Mirams and John O’Shea.

For the past decade the Film Archive has taken films from the collections to small towns and communities around New Zealand. We’re delighted to continue the Travelling Film Show series for 2012 where, for three nights each month, we come “home” to Wellington with our touring programmes.

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