Professor Anne Veronica Goldson

BSc (Otago), Dip Journalism (Canterbury), MA (NY), PhD (Auckland)


Annie Goldson has been producing and directing award-winning documentaries and docudramas for 20 years in the United States and New Zealand. Her work is known for its craft, sensitivity and engagement.

Her films have won over 50 awards at international film festivals, opened theatrically world wide and have been broadcast on prestigious channels including HBO-Cinemax, ABC-Aust, ARD (Germany),  Channel 4 (UK), POV (PBS), CBC, SBS, Canalplus, TVNZ, TV3, Maori Television and many more. Her best-known titles are Punitive Damage, Georgie Girl, Sheilas: 28 Years On, Pacific Solution: From Afghanistan to Aotearoa, Elgar's Engima, An Island Calling, Brother Number One, and He Toki Huna.  In 2017, she completed a new documentary KIM DOTCOM: Caught in the Web which premiered at SXSW in Austin, Texas and screening in Official Selection in multiple festivals include Hotodcs (Toronto), Melbourne and the New Zealand International Film Festival. It won Special Mention in the Best Documentary category at the Asia-Pacific Screen Awards and was #1 on the iTunes Top Ten in the US, Canada, NZ and Germany in November  2017. The film sold to Hulu streaming service in the US and UK, and to public broadcasters including YLE, ZDF, SVT and others. Annie has also overseen the production of an associated web project:

Annie is also a writer and has published articles in books and journals such as The Listener (NZ), Landfall, Screen, Semiotext(e), Social Text, Studies in International Documentary and others. Her book Landscape, Memory, Dad and Me was published by Victoria University Publications. She has been director of the biennial New Zealand International Documentary Conference (Expanding Documentary); a trustee of the New Zealand International Documentary Festival, Documentary Edge and the Africa New Zealand Film Festival; and was President of the Screen Directors’ Guild of New Zealand.

Receiving her PhD in Film and Television Studies from The University of Auckland in 2005, Annie is a Professor in the disciplinary area of Media and Communication teaching across the production and theory divide. She  was Head of Discipline in the years 2014-2016 and currently serves as PhD Advisor, heading the Graduate Studies Committee and is the VC appointee on the Professorial Promotions Committee. In 2006 she was awarded an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for Services to Film and was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand in 2017. Annie also received a Research Excellence Medal from the University of Auckland for her film Brother Number One, one of two recipients in the Faculty of Arts and was awarded a Research Excellence Medal from the Faculty of Arts itself.

In 2019, she received funding from Radio New Zealand/New Zealand on Air to direct a 10-part podcast, Faultlines: A No Crime Podcast on a highly contested criminal conviction. She has recently completed a collaborative project, First in Family, with Dr Ema Wolfgramm-Foliaki that follows five students, all the first in the family to go to University which received University research support. In 2020, Annie has received funding for two more documentaries from New Zealand on Air: along with former student Irene Chapple, she is producing Cry of Whakaari on the aftermath of the Whakaari White Island eruption and is producing and directing Lease on Life, which looks at breakthrough cancer immunotherapy treatment through the experience of Kiwi David Downs.

Research | Current

  • Documentary film directing, producing and editing
  • Documentary studies
  • Feminist film theory
  • Production studies
  • New media
  • Journalism studies
  • Media and social change

Current projects:

Lease on Life (documentary for Prime/Sky and international distribution)

The Cry of Whakaari (documentary for Mediaworks and international distribution)

Faultlines: A No-crime Podcast (10 podcast for Radio NZ and international distribution)

Red Mole (documentary for festivals)

First in Family (fif/ - completed.


Teaching | Current

COMMS 201 Journalism Studies

MEDIA 704 Documentary: The Real Returns

COMMS 713 Advanced Documentary Directing

I also regularly teach into other Screen and MEDIA papers.

Postgraduate supervision

Current PhD students:

Willow Yang (primary supervisor) - The Effect of Media Convergence on Female Journalists in China

Wen Wen Li (primary supervisor) - Standing Inside and Outside:  Independent Documentary by North American Chinese. 

Norman Zafra (primary supervisor) -  Negotiating transmedia in political documentary: Labour migration, politics, and the logic of cross-media. 

Hanwie Xie  (joint supervisor) - Magic Realism in Chinese Cinema

Alex Dickie (co-supervisor) -  Globalized and Localized Auteurship: Antipodean Directors and the Hollywood Industry

I have supervised 6 PhD completions including Jeanine Lim's, the first student to graduate from our discipline with a PhD in Creative Practice.


Current Masters students:

Yi Zhong - Telling a Chinese Story in NZ

Grace Watson - The Media and Gov't under Lockdown.


Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit

Multiple awards at national and international film festivals

Fellow, Royal Society of New Zealand

Research Excellence Award, the University of Auckland

Research Excellence Award, Faculty of Arts



Annie is currently PHD Advisor in the Disciplinary Area in Media, Film, and Television at the University of Auckland.

Areas of expertise

Documentary film directing, producing and editing

Documentary studies, feminist film theory, production studies, new media, journalism studies.

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Screen Directors Guild of New Zealand

Women in Film and Television

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Goldson, A. (2017). Making a Murderer. Paper presented at Visible Evidence XXIV, Buenos Aires, Argentina. 2 August - 6 August 2017.
  • Goldson, A. (12/3/2017). Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web [Film Documentary Feature], South by South West Festival, Austin Texas (premiere), Austin Texas. Related URL.
  • Goldson, A. V. (2017). 'Secret industry screening' KIM DOTCOM: Caught in the Web. Melbourne, Australia. 5 March - 8 March 2017. Related URL.
  • Goldson, A. V. (2017). Caught in the Web: Transmedia site. Related URL.
  • Goldson, A. V. (2016). Ethic / Ethnic / Aesthetic. Paper presented at CILECT Congress, Griffith University, Brisbane. 20 November - 24 November 2016. Related URL.
  • Goldson, A. V. (2016). Making a Murderer: an invitation to binge. Paper presented at 2016 ANZCA annual conference, Newcastle, Australia. 6 July - 8 July 2016. Related URL.
  • Goldson, A. (2015). Journalism plus?: The resurgence of creative documentary. Pacific Journalism Review, 21 (2), 86-98.
  • King, B., Goldson, A. V., & Robie, D. (Eds.) (2015). Documentary practice in the Asia-Pacific. Auckland: Pacific Media Centre. Pages: 217. Related URL.


Contact details

Primary office location

Level 5, Room 550
New Zealand

Web links