"I went to film school at Canterbury University in the early nineties but didn't learn much about making film till I worked at New Zealand's first cable TV station, Saturn TV. I learnt my craft by trial and error directing, editing and shooting short stories about local people in the Kapiti community - shooting them and editing them that day for the programme that night. We had massive audiences! I think in the early stages only 50 houses were cabled and there were 50 channels including our local one..." "I love the challenge of writing and directing drama and it's what I'm focusing full time on now."

Mark Albiston was awarded an Arts Foundation New Generation Award with his colleague, friend and co-producer Louis Sutherland in 2010.  The Six Dollar Fifty Man is the third short film that Mark & Louis have collaborated on and the first that they have officially co-directed.

Mark and Louis grew up together in the small Raumati Beach settlement, just north of Wellington. They began working together for a cable televison network. Louis then went to drama school and Mark went to film school developing their skills in production and performance. The two have now worked together in the industry for over 15 years.

Mark Albiston started the production company Sticky Fingers in 2000, with his lawyer wife, Amelia Bardsley.  The independent production company works across a range of genres including arts-based documentaries, short films, music videos and commercials.

Mark initiated, and worked in a range of roles on three award-winning series of The Living Room (2002 - 2006).  The series focussed on celebrating Kiwi creative people, delving into their art practices and lifestyles.   A follow-up show The Gravy began profiling New Zealand artists in 2007.

In 2007 Mark also directed the short film Run, from a script by fellow artist and actor Louis Sutherland (joint recipient of a 2010 New Generation Award). Selected to compete at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, this tale of a Samoan brother and sister struggling with an oppressive father while growing up on the Kapiti Coast, received a special mention from the jury.

Run was also picked as the opening film for the French Cesar short film festival, a selection of the world's best shorts that year. The film has gone on to win awards (including New Zealand Screen Awards for Best Short Film and Best Screenplay) and screen at numerous festivals worldwide. 

Mark directed the documentary The Magical World of Misery, about artist Tanya Thompson (aka Misery), for TV One's Artsville series.  He won the 2006 Qantas NZ Television Award for Documentary Directing for this documentary.

Mark has also directed two films for the Blood Earth & Fire exhibition at Te Papa, War of the Words (a documentary on spelling bees), the X-Air television series (for Sky, TV3 and C4), and a Shihad music video.

At the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, Mark and Louis were again awarded a special distinction, - for their short film The Six Dollar Fifty Man. This was the first time a director had two short films win at the prestigious festival.  The film tells the story of an eight-year-old boy compelled to emerge from his make believe world after being bullied. 

The film's impressive festival awards tally includes The Jury Prize in Short Filmmaking at the 26th Sundance Film Festival in Utah; qualifying for consideration for an Academy Award nomination; Best Drama at the Aspen Shortsfest in the USA; the Excellence Award by the LA BAFTA association at the Aspen shortsfest; a special mention at Berlin; it scooped three awards at the 2009 Qantas Film and Television Awards - including Best Short Film -  and won top prize at the 2010 Flickerfest festival in Australia. The film has made the long-list for the 2011 Academy Awards.

At the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, Mark and Louis premiered Shopping, their feature film co-directorial debut. The film revieced rave reviews and earned several awards including a Grand prix at the Berlin International Film Festival and seven New Zealand Film Awards including Best Film, Best Screenplay, and Best Director. 


The Six Dollar Fifty Man
Sundance 2010 - Jury Prize, Short Film
Aspen Film Festival 2010 - BAFTA Award for Excellence
Cannes Film Festival 2009 - Special Distinction
QANTAS Film & TV Awards 2009 - Best Short Film, Best Screenplay

Berlinale 2013 - Generation, Winner
NZ Film Awards 2013 - Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay
Sundance 2013 - Finalist, World Cinema


Shopping, the first feature film by writing and directing team Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland, won the Grand Prix of the Generation 14plus International section at the Berlin Film Festival. Opening NZ 30 May 2013
Mark Albiston (film maker) features with fellow recipient Louis Sutherland on the TVNZ 7 broadcast of The Artists, produced in partnership with the Arts Foundation.


Filmmaker Mark Albiston, poet Greg O'Brien and composer and musician Warren Maxwell talk about what motivates them with Paul Bushnell. Wine writer John Saker also contributes.
Born, Wellington New Zealand
Began production company Sticky Pictures
Qantas Media Awards - Best Television Magazine/ Lifestyle Programme;New Zealand Screen Awards - Best Lifestyle Series, 
Best Director, Factual/ Entertainment

Qantas Media Awards Best Television Magazine/ Lifestyle Programme (finalist) - Living Room Series 1New Zealand Screen Awards - Living Room Series 2 won Achievement in Directing  - Factual/Entertainment/Lifestyle, Best Lifestyle/ Entertainment Programme andAchievement in Directing, Factual/ Entertainment;Vodafone X*Air - 
Best Television Sports Programme (finalist)
New Zealand Screen Awards: 
Living Room Series 2 won Achievement in Directing, Factual/Entertainment/Lifestyle, Best Lifestyle/ Entertainment Programme and Achievement in Directing, Factual/ Entertainment;Nominee for Best Short Film - Dead End;Qantas Media Awards - Best Television Sports Coverage (finalist)
Qantas New Zealand Television Awards, Best New Zealand Arts/Festival Documentary - Magical World of Misery;New Zealand Screen Awards, Achievement in Directing, Factual/Entertainment/Lifestyle - Living Room Series 3

Cannes Film Festival Honorable Mention Winner - Short Film Run
Qantas Film and Television Awards - Best Information/Lifestyle Programme - The Gravy Series 1;Run, Golden Horseman Audience Award; 20th Filmfest Dresden International Short Film Festival, Germany;Run, First Place- Best of Shorts Film Festival, La Ciotat, Marseille, FranceRun, Overall Winner- Magma Short Film Festival, New Zealand
Sundance Film Festival, Winner Best International Short:Cannes Film Festival Special Distinction Winner - Short Film Six Dollar Fifty Man - also:Special Distinction - 62nd Festival De Cannes, France;Best International Short Fiction Film - Expresion en Corto, Mexico;Black Pearl 09 for Best Narrative Short - Middle East International Film Festival, United Arab Emirates;Silver Spike - 55th Valladolid International Film Festival, Spain
Recipient of New Generation Award with Louis Sutherland;Six Dollar Fifty Man wins:  2010 Coopers Award for Best Short Film - Flickerfest, Australia;  Jury Prize International Short Filmmaking - Sundance;Special Mention, 60th Internationale Filmfestspiele, Berlin; Best Narrative Short - 20th Annual Cinequest Film Festival, USA; Special Jury Award - NY Children's International Film Festival, USA; Best Drama- Aspen Shortsfest, USA; British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), Los Angeles; Prize for Excellence- Aspen Shortsfest, USA; Six Dollar Fifty Man nominated Best Short Film:Magma Short Film Festival, N.Z.;  Corto In Bra, Italy; Vladivostok International Film Festival, Russia;La Boca del Lobo Film Festival, Spain; 24fps International Short Film Festival, USA; Best International Short Film - Dokufest, Kosovo;Long-listed for 2011 Academy Awards;
The Six Dollar Fifty Man winsHeart of Gold International Film Festival's Best Short Film Award.