Bigger Picture began in 2019 by encouraging commercial operators to re-open the local cinema in Oamaru. When it seemed that no commercial operator was interested, we looked at creating a new cinema experience in Oamaru’s historic precinct.
In February 2020 we learnt that the former Limelight Cinema on Thames Street will be reopened in early 2021. We have no intention of competing with a commercial cinema. We have therefore been in contact with the new operators to explore how we might work with them to offer diverse film events.
Then came the COVID-19 pandemic and the weeks of lockdown. Seeking a socially-distanced film event, we were inspired to try something new and different as a morale boost for the community. The “Drive-in Movies at the Quarry” featuring an iconic NZ film was everything we hoped for and more. It almost felt as if the community had waited for a chance to demonstrate their generosity, offer their skills, resources and talents and show their support for our vision of film as an opportunity to bring the community together. The support from a wide range of volunteers and businesses, as well as the positive feedback from attendees, have encouraged us to continue exploring diverse cultural and educational offerings in the vibrant and supportive environment that is Oamaru.
Our organisation was formally registered as a charitable trust in early August 2020.