Run time: 124mins

Director: James Napier Robertson

Cast: Cliff Curtis, James Rolleston, Kirk Torrance

Synopsis: One-time Maori speed-chess champion Genesis Potini battles many things on a daily basis including bi-polar disorder, prejudice and violence. Despite his own adversities he finds the courage to lead, purpose and hope in passing on his gift to the disadvantaged children in his community



This moving and inspiring film is the true story of Genesis ‘Gen’ Potini, a charismatic Maori speed-chess champion who struggled with severe bi-polar disorder.

Cliff Curtis [(Once Were Warriors (1994), The Whale Rider (2002), Sunshine (2007)] gives the performance of his career as the overweight, fragile Gen who gets his life back on track by coaching Eastern Knights, a speed-chess club for local youths at risk.  He also involves his nephew Mana (James Rolleston) in the group, introducing the teenager to a world beyond the macho biker gang culture of his father, with deep and lasting consequences for all.

A stunning, compelling and inspiring film.

Chris Curtis talked about Genesis Potini and bringing his story to film when he appeared at the recent Glasgow Film Festival –

Images courtesy of Koch Media

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