Barbara Sumner-Burstyn

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Barbara Sumner-Burstyn
Barbara Sumner Burstyn

ResidenceNew Zealand
OccupationFilmmaker, writer
Spouse(s)Thomas Burstyn

Barbara Sumner Burstyn is a New Zealand film producer and writer.[1] She co-founded the film production company Cloud South Films with her husband Tom Burstyn and has served as a writer for The New Zealand Herald.

Sumner-Burstyn is also well known for her controversial criticism of New Zealand's involvement in the War in Afghanistan, in particular her comments which appeared to celebrate the death of army medic Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker who was fatally wounded after a roadside bomb detonated and hit the Humvee in which she was travelling during New Zealand's reconstruction mission in Bamyan Province.[2]


  • This Way of Life (2013)


  • Some Kind of Love (2015, as producer and writer)
  • This Way of Life (2013)
  • Red White Black & Blue (2012, as producer)
  • This Way of Life (2009, as producer and writer)[3][4]
  • One Man, One Cow, One Planet (2007, as producer and writer)


This Way of Life (2011):

  • Shortlist 2011 Academy Awards
  • Berlin International Film Festival, Jury Prize.
  • Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, Best Feature Film,
  • Victoria Independent FF, Texas, Best Documentary
  • Bend International FF, Oregon, Best Documentary 2012
  • Bend International FF, Oregon, Best Feature Film, 2012
  • Iowa Indie Film Festival 2011, People's Choice -
  • Iowa Indie Film Festival 2011, Best Documentary
  • Docville Official Selection 2011 Belgium
  • DocEdge Festival Outstanding Contribution to New Zealand Documentary 2011 Qantas Film Awards 2010, Best Documentary
  • FIFO 2011 Special Jury Award
  • Anuuruaboro Youth Jury Prize
  • Wairoa Maori Film Festival 2010, Audience Award
  • Plus Cameraimage nominated Best Cinematography, Poland 2010
  • Sold to 22 countries

One Man, One Cow, One Planet:

  • Best Environmental Conservation Film: CMS Vatravan, India
  • Katherine Knight Award: EarthVision International Film Festival
  • Best Non-Broadcast Film: Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival
  • Award of Excellence: The Accolade
  • Sold to 16 countries


  1. ^ "Barbara Sumner Burstyn: a family's life". Radio New Zealand. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
  2. ^ "Apology over dead soldier comments". Stuff. Retrieved 26 August 2012.
  3. ^ Anderson, John. "Review: 'This Way of Life'". Variety. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
  4. ^ Harvey, Helen. "A way of life". Retrieved 22 May 2015.

External links[edit]