Ross James Jennings (13 November 1944 – 25 March 2016) was a New Zealand actor, becoming one of New Zealand's most experienced television producers and directors, whose credits included The Mad Dog Gang, Close to Home, Moynihan, Inside Straight, feature film I Live with Me Dad, Australian TV series Special Squad and Acropolis Now, NZ's soap Homeward Bound, New Zealand's first reality series, Middlemore, Strip Search, Police Ten 7 and Melody Rules.
He devised, created and produced TVNZ's highly successful 36 hr live to air Millenium Show as well as devising, creating and producing Maori Television's ANZAC Day show - a 17-hour, annual, live to air programme which played a large part in the resurgence of the ANZAC Day revitalisation in NZ, as well as becoming Maori Television's flagship programme.
As a member of the NZ Players and Children's Art Theatre, Ross Jennings toured NZ as an actor before being granted a QE2 Arts Council Grant to study acting in England where he worked at Salisbury Theatre and took on minor television and film roles, before returning to New Zealand in 1971.
He joined the NZBC in 1973, and the Drama Department within 18 mths, mentored by producer Tony Issac.
He was appointed Head of Drama for TVNZ in the late 70's and left for Australia to work with Grundy Productions and finally to head Crawford Production's Development Department in 1982. During this period he produced his first feature film, I Live with Me Dad.
His return to New Zealand in 1987 saw him create and produce some of New Zealand's most successful television amongst which is NZ's longest running reality series, Police Ten7, and the hugely successful Strip Search,
His final series, which he devised to demystify the running of NZ Parliament, Inside Parliament, was in production when he died.
Ross Jennings, a former head of drama at TVNZ, died on 25 March 2016, aged 71. His death was preceded by that of his mother-in-law, Edna Peters, 96, who died the same day. He left behind his wife, Carmel Jennings, whom he ran his production company, Just The Ticket Productions with, also a television and film producer, and six children.
|I Live with Me Dad||1988||No||Yes||No|
|Kahu & Maia||1994||No||Yes||No|
|Once Were Warriors||1994||No||No||No||Script development|
The numbers in writing credits refer to the number of episodes.
|Richard John Seddon: Premier||1973||No||No||No||NZBC||Television documentary film|
Assistant to the producer
|Close to Home||1975–76||Yes (782)||Yes||No||Television One||Producer (782 episodes, 1975-76)|
|The Mad Dog Gang Meets Rotten Fred and Ratsguts||1978||Yes||Yes||No||Television film|
|All Things Being Equal||1978||Yes||No||No|
|Skyways||1979||Yes (4)||No||No||Network 7|
|The Mad Dog Gang Spooks Wilkie, Wink Wink and the Wobbler||1980||Yes||Yes||No||Television One||Television film|
|Kingi's Story||1981||No||No||No||Television film|
|The Monster's Christmas||1981||No||No||No||Television One||Television film|
|Casualties of Peace||1983||No||No||Yes||Television film|
|Prisoner||1983–84||Yes (12)||No||No||Network Ten|
|Special Squad||1984||No||Yes||No||Associate producer|
|Carson's Law||1984||Yes (2)||No||No|
|Inside Straight||1984||Yes (1)||No||No||Television One|
|Space Knights||1989||No||Yes||No||Channel 2|
|Homeward Bound||1992||Yes (2)||No||Yes||TV3|
|Air Force||2005||No||No||Yes||TV One||Docuseries|
|Wayne Anderson: Singer of Songs||2005||No||No||Yes||Documentary film|
|Wayne Anderson: Singer of Songs||2006||No||No||Yes||Mockumentary|
|Wayne Anderson: Glory Days||2009||No||No||Yes||Prime||Mockumentary|
|Life's a Riot||2009||No||No||Yes||TV One||Television film|
- "Ross Jennings". NZOnScreen. 2016. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
- "Kiwi TV producer Ross Jennings dies aged 71". New Zealand Herald. 27 March 2016. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
- Otto, Michael (9 May 2016). "Renowned television and Passion play producer dies - NZ Catholic Newspaper". Nzcatholic.org.nz. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
- "Ross Jennings death notice". New Zealand Herald. 28 March 2016. Retrieved 23 April 2016.