Doug Dillaman & Brendan Withy / Loading Docs

Imagine The World Is Ending

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Can two schoolboys change the world with a poem - and a selfie stick? We're taking the voice of New Zealand youth to the world - and we need your help.

"Imagine The World Is Ending", a poem by Mt Albert Grammar School students Jahmal Nightingale and  Joseph McNamara, blew us* away when we first heard it while documenting the Word The Front Line inter-high school spoken word poetry competition last year. We were excited enough about it to propose to Loading Docs and they have agreed to help us make a film featuring this poem.

Why selfie sticks? Simply put: we want viewers worldwide to connect to the poem the same way that we do when we're in the room. We want eye contact. And we want Joseph and Jahmal to take us into their world - to share with us not just their poem, but the fabric of their lives.

But we're not talking about an iPhone and a cheap $25 stick here. That's what we shot our pitch video on - but to get professional looking gear that does their poem justice, we'll need a high-end "monopod" and a quality camera with image stabilization. This gear will ensure a stable picture and guarantee that they can make direct eye contact with the viewer. (You'll notice that our eyes aren't always straight in the pitch video - that's the difference a real camera will make!) We'll also need good audio recording equipment to make sure their poem sounds great.

That's why we need your help. We're asking for $2000, which is the amount we need to make sure we deliver a high-quality film that not just us but also Joseph and Jahmal are proud of. And once we meet this goal of $2000, Loading Docs will match that amount - so every dollar you put in has double impact!

If we raise more than our goal, we'll be pouring our money into marketing - Facebook and YouTube ads, specifically - in order to get as many different social media eyeballs in front of our inspirational New Zealand youth and their poetry as possible.

As a Boosted supporter, you'll be contributing not just to New Zealand film but giving a microphone to our nation's young people. If this film is successful, it can act as a catalyst to inspire other students like them in our country. At a time when many people only hear negative stories of our youth, we think it's important to give them the chance to tell their own stories - and we're sure viewers will make up their own mind as to just how intelligent and engaged our youth truly are.

We really feel like we've stumbled upon a treasure in the words of Joseph and Jahmal, and we're desperate to share their work with the rest of the world. Won't you help us?

*Us is Brendan Withy and Doug Dillaman. We've both worked in the television and film industry for over ten years, from editing to writing to camera to directing.


  • A message of thanks from the poets.


  • A smashing start!


    Hi all, 

    We're more than a little bit blown away! In just 48 hours we're already 42% of the way to our goal. Who knows, it might be more by the time I finish typing this! Thank you all so much for your help, we are deeply humbled and hugely appreciative and look forward to doing you proud. 

    For those of you on Facebook, we've set up a Facebook page that we'll keep updated throughout the production and release of our film. Check it out at

    And as a little treat, here's a video by another team from the Word The Front Line competition in 2015. Each year Loading Docs has a theme - this year it was "Change" - and the poem by Joseph and Jahmal fits that theme perfectly. But there were plenty of other great poems in the competition, and this one by Rebecca Sang Yum & Joanne Afato of McAuley High School was hugely moving, intermittently hilarious, and is highly recommended. 

    with gratitude, 

    Doug & Brendan

Loading Docs

Loading Docs is a unique New Zealand documentary initiative that aims to captivate and inspire audiences as well as develop and promote New Zealand filmmaking talent. Since launching in 2014 Loading Docs has touched audiences all over the world. Our films have been seen online, on TV, in film festivals... even on airplanes!

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