Pioneer New Zealand filmmaker Rudall Hayward was inspired by James Cowan’s writings on the New Zealand wars. In 1925, three years after Cowan’s two-volume history appeared, Hayward made Rewi's last stand, a feature film about the conflict in Waikato which climaxed with a re-enactment of the battle of Ōrākau. In 1940, as a centennial gesture, he remade the film using sound and adding a romantic element to the plot. Cowan’s book and Hayward’s films were among the few major cultural expressions of interest in the New Zealand wars before the 1980s.
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New Zealand Film Archive Ngā Kaitiaki O Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua, Hayward Collection
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