She blazed her way into the Kiwi consciousness with her soul-stirring role as Beth Heke in the groundbreaking Once Were Warriors. And now Aotearoa screen queen Rena Owen is preparing for her return to her homeland to live with a renewed sense of Mahana and Maru. Owen was swept away to Hollywood 16 years ago to continue to pursue her award-winning career. But on the way, she had to give up her dog - a part staffie, part blue heeler - and her cat. My dog was Maru - protector - and my cat was Mahana - comfort. I'm looking forward to having pets again, and being able to have a veggie garden," she says. The year-old will build that veggie garden at her property at Muriwai, on Auckland's west coast, which she bought using some of the money she earned from the film Rapa-Nui , where she starred alongside Jason Scott Lee and Esai Morales.