Murphy’s death on Monday was confirmed by the New Zealand Film Commission. The organization called him “one of the leading figures in New Zealand cinema’s renaissance of the late 1970s and 1980s.”
A writer, director and producer, Murphy directed three films in that period – “Goodbye Pork Pie,” “Utu,” and “The Quiet Earth” – that were timely and locally-rooted. They are now considered as Kiwi classics.
Murphy’s creative career kicked off as a founding member of musical, theatrical troupe Blerta. His first film, “Wild Man” was largely developed and improvised by Blerta regulars. Murphy’s road movie “Never Say Die,” gave Temuera Morrison his first starring role.
“At the end of the 1980s, Geoff worked mainly in the U.S., directing films like ‘Young Guns II,’ and