Tusi is an award-winning graduate of the Victoria University of Wellington, the NZ Film School, and the University of Waikato. Tusi’s earlier work includes Va Tapuia – Sacred Spaces (2009), a fifteen-minute short film which premiered at the 2010 NZ International Film Festival. This short film forged the team which later formed the backbone of the crew for The Orator.
While The Orator's status as Samoa's first feature film makes it a native landmark, writer/director Tusi Tamasese's deft command of atmospherics, tone, and rhythm transforms it into a genuinely noteworthy achievement. Primarily employing first-time actors to bring this delicately wrought tale to life, Tamasese centers his film on Saili (Fiaula Sagote), a diminutive pariah who lives with his wife Vaaiga and her wilful daughter at the outskirts of a remote jungle village. More