The Tribe (TV series)

The Tribe (TV series)

Infobox Television
show_name = The Tribe

caption = Opening Credits Title
genre = Teen drama / Science fiction
creator = Raymond Thompson
Harry Duffin
developer = Cloud 9, Five
presenter =
starring =
theme_music_composer = Simon May
Simon Lockyer
opentheme = "The Dream Must Stay Alive"
Rosalind J (Series 1)
Meryl Cassie (Series 2–5)
endtheme = "The Dream Must Stay Alive"
Rosalind J (Series 1)
"Abe Messiah"
"Tribe" cast (Series 2–3)
"Tribe Spirit"
Meryl, Megan and Monique Cassie (Series 4–5)
country = NZ
language = English
num_series = 5
num_episodes = 260
list_episodes = The Tribe episode guide
producer = Declan Eames
executive_producer = Raymond Thompson
Geoff Husson
location =
camera = Multi-camera
runtime = 25 minutes
network = Five
picture_format =
audio_format =
first_run = UK
first_aired = 24 April 1999
last_aired = 6 September 2003
preceded_by =
followed_by = "The New Tomorrow"
related =
website =
imdb_id = 0274988
tv_com_id = 4588

"The Tribe" is a post-apocalyptic soap opera primarily aimed at teenagers. It is set in a hypothetical near-future in which all adults have been wiped out by a deadly virus, leaving the children of the world to fend for themselves. The show's focus is on an unnamed city inhabited by tribes of children and teenagers. It was primarily filmed in and around Wellington, New Zealand. The series was created by Raymond Thompson and Harry Duffin and was produced by Channel 5 and Cloud 9 Screen Entertainment Group. It has aired on broadcast networks around the world, including Five in the United Kingdom, WAM! in the United States and TV4 in New Zeland.

It debuted on April 24th, 1999 and quickly gained a large fan base. From 1999 to 2003, five Series and 260 half-hour episodes were produced. Series 6 was scheduled to begin filming in 2003, but Nick Wilson, of Channel 5, and Raymond Thompson felt that "although the show was still performing well, the cast was getting too old and the series was beginning to stretch the core proposition." The characters weren’t kids fending for themselves without adults anymore. [ TBI Kids' Briefing : New Day Dawns On Cloud 9's Tribe Franchise] , retrieved on 2008-10-08] As a result, the show was cancelled. Five aired the final two episodes on September 6th, 2003.

A sequel to "The Tribe", "The New Tomorrow", was produced by Cloud 9 and Channel 5 and aired in 2005. It was aimed at a younger audience, 8 to 12 year olds, and had a new cast [ [ Cloud 9 to Produce Sequel Series to The Tribe] , retrieved on 2008-10-08.] that portrayed descendents of the characters from "The Tribe".



Discussion which led to the creation of the series began when Raymond Thompson, co-founder of the production company Cloud 9 and known for his work as a screenwriter on the soap "Howard's Way", was approached by Nick Wilson of Channel 5 to “develop a soap for the millennium targeting a child/adolescent market”.

Having already worked with writer Harry Duffin on several occasions, Raymond Thompson contacted him in November 1997 to work with him on the writing of the new TV series. Together, they worked on the first premise of the storyline and wrote basic characters outlines. They later recruited a team of ten writers and by July 1998 the first four scripts of "The Tribe" were finished.

Pre-production for Series 1 started in June 1998 and filming began in August 1998. Principal photography was completed in March 1999 [ [ Cloud 9 - History] , [ Cloud 9 Official Site] , retrieved on 2008-10-07] [ [ Trivia] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-08.] and the first episode premiered on Five on April 24th, 1999. [ [;ep_title;0 Episode 101 Air Date] , [ Website] , retrieved on 2008-10-07]


Each Series took about four to six months to shoot. Filming mainly took place in two studios at Cloud 9’s production centre in Wellington, New Zealand.

The permanent set of the “Phoenix Shopping Mall” was located in Studio A. This huge structure took five weeks to build prior to the commencement of principal photography and was said to be the largest set in New Zealand at the time. [ [ A New Tribe on the Block – Herald Tribune] , retrieved on 2008-10-09.] Every shops contained in the Mall were built to almost realistic shop size specifications and destined to last for a long time.Studio B housed the sewers that the Mall Rats use to secretly escape the Mall, as well as temporary structures that were built for certain scenes. The Mall set was repainted and dressed accordingly to use on another Cloud 9 production that was filmed at the same time: "Atlantis High". [ [ Location Report – Art and Design Department] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-09.]

"The Tribe" was also shot on location in and around Wellington. For example, the Cloud 9 Studios car park was used as the exterior of the Mall and Alice and Ellie’s farmhouse was built in the rural area of Whitemans Valley in Upper Hutt. [ [ Special Report – Location Shooting] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-09.] At times, the crew closed off Wellington streets during the weekends to shoot scenes that took place in the post-apocalyptic City of "The Tribe". [ [ Locations] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-09.]

The cast and crew amounted to about 400 up to 500 people working on each Series of "The Tribe".

Most actors were still in school and were tutored between scenes at Cloud 9’s production centre. [ [ Location Report from Production of Tribe Series 2 - Week 2] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-09.] The under aged cast stayed in the “Cast House” for the duration of the shoot and were accompanied by chaperones on set. [ [ Life in the Cast House – Interview with House Mother Saranne James] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-09.] Inter-cast dating was strictly forbidden and actors Jaimee Kaire-Gataulu and Dan Weekes-Hannah were fired during Series 4 because of this rule. [ [ Tearaway: New Zealand Magazine: Daniel Weekes Hannah Interview] , retrieved on 2008-10-09.]


The Tribe was targeted primarily at an audience age of 8 to 18, though it has fans of all ages. [ Interview with the Creators of The Tribe—Raymond Thompson and Harry Duffin] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-05-27.] Five series of "The Tribe" have been created, with 52 episodes per series, amounting to 260 episodes in the entire run. [ [ Guide: Plot synopsis] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-05-27]

The Tv series starts about six to nine months after all the adults have been killed by an unknown Virus The story is about the survival of the children and teenagers who are left on their own in and around an unnamed City. The world has become a primitive hell of anarchy, confusion, danger and fear. With no adults to guide, rule or protect them, the children of the world are on their own and need to build a New World they can live in. [ [ The Tribe Overview] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-05-29]

In order to survive, the children band together in Tribes. They give themselves new names, reinvent dress codes and beliefs and create their own rules. Some Tribes are power hungry and malevolent, while others just try not to make the same mistakes the adults did and strive for peace.

The show mainly focuses on the Tribe of the Mall Rats. Its members are confronted with problems of technology (how to get clean water and some form of power) and problems of morality. The children deal with teenage issues (loves, fears, betrayals, ambitions, friendships) as well as bigger issues that threaten peace in their New World (finding an antidote to the Virus, bringing peace to the City, defeating the Locos, Chosen and Technos).

The Tribes

In "The Tribe" all the children belong to different Tribes.

After a Virus kills all of the adults, the world turns into chaos and the children left behind start to form tribes as a means to survival. Some Tribes only seek to have power, while other Tribes aim to create a new peaceful world. Each Tribe has its own specific clothes or make-up which help them to differentiate themselves from other Tribes. The Series mainly focuses on the life of the Mall Rats. [ [ What is a tribe?] , [ Tribe heaven Website] , retrieved on 2008-06-01]


Cast and characters

Most of the cast had agents prior to the casting in 1998, as they had already worked on productions that were filmed in New Zealand, such as "", "" or "Mirror, Mirror II". Many of the actors had worked with Raymond Thompson on other Cloud 9 productions before they auditioned for "The Tribe". Jennyfer Jewell and Ryan Runciman had worked on "The Enid Blyton Adventure Series" in 1996 and Jennyfer had also starred in "The Enid Blyton Secret Series" in 1997 alongside Daniel James. Beth Allen and Michael Wesley-Smith had been casted in "The Legend of William Tell" in 1998 and many cast members of Series 1 had acted in William Shatner’s "A Twist in the Tale" in 1999.

Series 1:
* Caleb Ross - Lex (1999–2003)
* Meryl Cassie - Ebony (1999–2003)
* Antonia Prebble - Trudy (1999–2003)
* Victoria Spence - Salene (1999–2003)
* Beth Allen - Amber / Eagle (1999; 2001-2003)
* Michael Wesley-Smith - Jack (1999–2003)
* Dwayne Cameron - Bray (1999–2001)
* Jaimee Kaire-Gataulu - Cloe (1999–2002)
* Michelle Ang - Tai-San (1999–2001)
* Ari Boyland - KC (1999–2001)
* Ryan Runciman - Ryan (1999–2001)
* Sarah Major - Patsy (1999–2001)
* Ashwath Sundarasen - Dal (1999–2000)
* Beanie Palmer - Brady #1 (1999)
* Kiriana Chase - Brady #2 (1999)
* Daniel James - Zoot / Martin (1999–2003)
* Amy Morrison - Zandra (1999)
* Zachary Best - Paul (1999)

Series 2:
* Jennyfer Jewell - Ellie (1999–2003)
* Laura Wilson - May (2000–2003)
* Vanessa Stacey - Alice (1999–2001)
* Damon Andrews - The Guardian / Jaffa (1999–2001)
* Ella Wilks - Danni (1999–2000)
* Story Rose and Eva Rose (twins) Brady #3 (1999-2000)
* Ariel Garland - Brady #4 (1999-2000)

Series 3:
* Nick Miller - Pride (2000–2003)
* Jacob Tomuri - Luke (2000–2001)
* James Ordish - Andy (2001)
* Amelia Reynolds - Tally (2001)
* Bevin Linkhorn - Ned (2001)
* Georgia-Taylor Woods - Brady #5 (2001-2003)

Series 4:
* James Napier - Jay (2002–2003)
* Tom Hern - Ram (2002–2003)
* Jacinta Wawatai - Mouse (2002–2003)
* Monique Cassie - Siva (2002–2003)
* Megan Alatini - Java (2002–2003)
* Lucas Hayward - Sammy (2002–2003)
* Lucas Hill - Bray Jr #1 (2002)
* Calen Maiava-Paris - Mega / Josh (2002–2003)
* Kelly Stevenson - Dee (2002)
* Dan Weekes-Hannah - Ved (2002)
* Morgan Palmer Hubbard - Patch (2002)

Series 5:
* Fleur Saville - Ruby (2003)
* Matt Robinson - Slade (2003)
* Joseph Crawford - Darryl (2003)
* Vicky Rodewyk - Gel (2003)
* Beth Chote - Lottie (2003)
* Adam Sondej - Bray Jr #2 (2003)


Series 6

Before "The Tribe" was canceled, Series 6 was scheduled to begin filming in 2003. However U.K. channel Five - who part funded the series - declined support for the sixth series because of what it perceived as 'raised adult content' and as such, unable to find another funder, the show was canceled.

The scripts for the first 2 episodes in Series 6 were included exclusively on the Series 5 DVD boxset. The episodes followed the story of the Mallrats as they arrived on an island the other side of the boat trip. The Spin off "The New Tomorrow" ultimately used and adapted many themes and story lines intended for Series 6.

The Official Tribeworld Website reports that many of the cast now have varied jobs and lives, so it seems unlikely that a sixth series will ever be filmed and aired. However, the creators did mention plans to continue the tribe through other media if possible: Both a cartoon and movie were mentioned by the creator in an interview online, but since then nothing has since been mentioned regarding this.

2007 was marked as the year of the "tribe revival" by the official website. Since then nothing more was mentioned, and the entire post announcing the "tribe revival" was taken offline.


Since its cancellation, the series has continued though fan-based efforts via the internet including fan fiction and films particularly on video sharing websites such as YouTube.

The official Tribe message board continued to be moderately active until August 2008, when the board went down for an as-of-yet undisclosed amount of time., a popular Tribe fansite, campaigned for a continuation the series for three years before its website also went offline around the same time; as of September 2008, its message board was still active however.

The cast

After the series ended, the casts careers launched greatly.

* Caleb Ross went on to become a foley artist for The Tribe's spin-off, "The New Tomorrow".
* Tom Hern, who played Ram, went on to play Nurse Baxter Cormack in Shortland Street and Devin Del Valle in .
* James Napier (Jay) went on to play Conner McKnight, the Red Ranger, in and . Beth Allen (Amber), Tom Hern (Ram), Antonia Prebble (Trudy), Dwayne Cameron (Bray) and Vicky Rodewyk (Gel) have also guest starred in these, or other Power Rangers shows.
* Michael Wesley-Smith (Jack) was also cast as the lead, Giles, on yet another of Cloud 9's shows, a teen comedy, Atlantis High. Victoria Spence (Salene) also played Antonia/Anthony in the show. Also, Smith recently passed the bar as a lawyer.
* Joseph Crawford (Darryl) now works as an editor & director of a new video production company Crawford Pictures as well as continuing to act.
* Vanessa Stacey (Alice) has had many small parts in films and was the voice and acting coach on "The New Tomorrow".
* Jennyfer Jewell (Ellie) went on to become a household name around Dunedin for her celebrity appearances in the University student-review Capping Show.

The New Tomorrow

The series also inspired a spin-off called "The New Tomorrow". The spin-off was set at an undisclosed period of time after the events of "The Tribe" Series 5. Unlike "The Tribe", "The New Tomorrow" was aimed at a younger audience and its cast was made up of pre-teens. The spin-off had none of the original Tribe characters, however there were mentions of The Mall, Bray and Zoot. The Series didn't return for a second series. No plans for a DVD release are currently known.

The Tribe game

The official Tribe website told fans about plans to release video game of "The Tribe". However, this idea has not yet been put in place and nothing further has been mentioned for several years. Recently, Tribemaster told fans that they will like what's coming soon if they enjoy games and technology. It was speculated that a Tribe game would be part of the 2007 "Tribal Revival". However, nothing as of yet has been announced.

Broadcast history

The first Series of "The Tribe" premiered in the UK on April 24th, 1999 on "Five". [ [;ep_title;0 Episode 101 Air Date] , [ Website] , retrieved on 2008-06-01] Five Series, totalling 260 episodes, were produced. The final two episodes of "The Tribe" were shown on September 6th, 2003 on "Five". [ [;title;25 Episodes 551-552 Air Date] , [ Website] , retrieved on 2008-06-01] "Five" aired two episodes every week on Saturdays and Sundays.

"The Tribe" also aired in New Zealand and in the United States, among others. The series began airing in New Zealand on August 31st, 1999 on TV4. It had a tremendous response from audiences due to the fact that it was filmed in the country and that the actors were mostly locals. [ [ 1999-08-31 News] , [ The Tribe Official Site] , retrieved on 2008-10-07] In the US, Series 1 premiered on December 1st, 1999 on Encore's WAM! Channel. [ [ 1999-12-06 News] , [ The Tribe Official Site] , retrieved on 2008-10-07] WAM! stopped airing "The Tribe" after Series 4, but fans petitioned the channel [ [ 2003-12-15 News] , [ The Tribe Official Site] , retrieved on 2008-10-07] and the final Series started airing on September 6th, 2004. [ [ 2004-08-16 News] , [ The Tribe Official Site] , retrieved on 2008-10-07]

Other international markets which have aired the series include the following:

* - ABC2 (December 2002)
* - RTRS
* - TVO
* - HRT
* - TV2
* - ETV
* - YLE TV2
* - TMC (September 2002)
* - KI.KA
* - RTÉ Two (January 2000)
* - Channel 1
* - Fun Channel
* - Yorin, RTL 5
* - NRK1
* - TVR2
* - SBC
* - RTV (April 2000)
* - SABC 1
* - Telecinco, FDF
* - SVT
* - TSR 2

DVD releases

Series 1 was first released in 2003 by Sanctuary Entertainment. Two years later, Revelation Films purchased rights to the show and released all five Series throughout 2006.

Each of the five DVD box sets contains seven discs, with a total of 52 episodes. [ [ DVD Infos] , [ Tribe heaven Website] , retrieved on 2008-05-28]

Book releases

Several books based on the series were published in English and in German.

Books published in English:

* Paula Boock, "Power and Chaos", Random House - Auckland, September 17, 2000. ISBN 1869414357
* Ken Catran, "Mall Rats", Random House – Auckland, 2001. ISBN 1869414713 [ [ The Tribe Books] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-10-06]

Books published in German:

There are (as of November, 2005) seventeen books which have been released in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. The first two books were originally written by Ralph Sander in early 2002. They were later continued by Linda Jensen until 2005. Natalie Gordon wrote three further books between 2004 and 2005.

CD releases

Abe Messiah
* The first Tribe CD album was released on 7 November 2000 in New Zealand and on 19 March 2001 worldwide. The album featured the opening and closing themes from the TV series as well as other songs featured in the show. All songs were recorded by the Series 2 cast.

# "Abe Messiah"
# "Spinning"
# "You Belong To Me"
# "Abadeo"
# "Banging The Drum"
# "This Is The Place"
# "I Can't Stop"
# "Beep Beep"
# "Everywhere You Go"
# "The Dream Must Stay Alive" [ [ The Tribe CDs] , [ The Tribe] Official Website, retrieved on 2008-05-28]

Abe Messiah – Remix
* In 2003, a remixed version of the album was released in Germany. It also featured three music videos: "Abe Messiah", "You Belong To Me" and "This Is The Place" in mpg format.

# "Banging The Drum (Remix)"
# "You Belong To Me"
# "This Is The Place"
# "Spinnin"
# "Urban Guerrilla (Instrumental)"
# "Beep Beep"
# "I Can't Stop"
# "Everywhere You Go"
# "Abe Messiah (Remix)"
# "Abadeo"
# "Tribe Spirit"
# "Reflections (Instrumental)"
# "Day In The Urban Jungle (Instrumental)"
# "The Dream Must Stay Alive" [ [ The Tribe CD infos] , [ Tribe heaven Website] , retrieved on 2008-05-29]

ee also

* The Odyssey (TV series)
* Jeremiah (TV series)


External links

; Official sites
* [ The Tribe] Official website
* [ The Tribe] Official German website
* [ The Tribe] Official U.S. website

; Unofficial sites
* [ The Tribe wiki]
* [ The Tribe] DVD Info site

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