The Joburg Film Festival and the MultiChoice Group have embarked on an exciting collaboration to create South Africa's preeminent film festival. By Peter Feldman
The festival, which is set to showcase the finest films from more than 16 countries, aims to curate, elevate and celebrate the best stars and films from across Africa and the world and runs from 19 to 24 November 2019.
Inspired by the establishment of DISCOP AFRICA, the festival is now in its third year and was born out of the desire to create an independent platform that not only tells Africa's stories, but showcases and rewards the continent's and international excellence in film. This film festival is the only one on the African continent that features specially curated content and aims to elevate and celebrate the best stars and curated films from across the African continent and the globe.
"We couldn't have asked for a better partner than the MultiChoice Group, an organisation that is passionate about African storytelling, as we believe our stories are our gold," says Joburg Film Festival Executive Director Timothy Mangwedi. "We see the film festival as a critical catalyst for social cohesion, showcasing a special collection of films that celebrate Africa's beauty, people, creativity and reflect the continent's bold spirit and talent," says Mangwedi.
"As Africa's leading storyteller, our partnership with the Joburg Film Festival makes perfect sense," says Joe Heshu, MultiChoice Executive Group Corporate Affairs. "Our collaborative effort to bring African stories to the world and to provide a platform for local talent to shine will be an extremely positive boost for the film industry on the continent," continues Heshu.
The Joburg Film Festival will also firmly position Joburg as the country's cultural capital, attracting the best in the industry to the City of Gold and growing cultural tourism in Johannesburg and South Africa.
"We are confident that in collaboration with the MultiChoice Group, we can build a world- class annual film festival that becomes entrenched on the international film circuit and positions Joburg as a prime destination for local and international filmmakers," says Mangwedi.
"We are proud to see the Joburg Film Festival grow into an important part of our growing creative economy. The City of Joburg is the home of film and television in our country. It is therefore fitting that we build a film festival that brings the world to the city to celebrate our stories."
"We are investing in the film festival in part through our agency, the Gauteng Film Commision; which was established to stimulate and encourage the growth and development of a sustainable film and television industry that can contribute to our country's economy and create much needed jobs. The Joburg Film Festival is a timely and relevant catalytic investment to this end," Mbali Hlophe, MEC, Gauteng Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation.
The extended Joburg Film Festival programme centres around three important elements: Film Programme, Industry Programme and Youth and Audience Development Programme. Highlights of the 2019 Joburg Film Festival include the following:
- The six-day Film programme includes all the excitement and Hollywood pizzazz associated with red carpet premieres, screenings and awards as celebrities rub shoulders with serious filmgoers in a rich display of filmmaking at its very best.
- A unique and enthralling line-up of local and international films will be curated by an expert team of curators, led by Pedro Pimenta, a respected filmmaker and member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
- A panel of five industry leading experts has been constituted to judge the films presented at the festival. The films will be judged on elements such as storyline, direction, creativity, cinematography, relevance, execution and technical application. The jury includes the likes of world-renowned storyteller and South African novelist, Zakes Mda, and award-winning actress famous for her role in NCIS New Orleans, CC Pounder and Femi Odugbemi, West Africa MultiChoice Talent Factory Academy Director.
- As part of the Industry Programme, DISCOP, the continent's leading market for content, production, acquisition and distribution, provides an opportunity for more than 1 000 like-minded entertainment and media players to connect and share experiences about current best practice trends.
- Seasoned and well-known industry professionals from the continent and abroad will participate in the Industry Programme this year through a series of master classes and panel discussions that will cover important aspects of the filmmaking craft.
- To create strong links between young people and the growing film, TV and new digital media industries on the African continent, the Youth and Audience Development Programme will offer young self-taught filmmakers and those new to the world of filmmaking an opportunity to interact with leading industry players.
- The 2019 Joburg Film Festival also marks the establishment and launch of the Joburg Film Festival film club - a lifestyle centred club of people gathered for the enjoyment and appreciation of the cinematic arts. The film club will bring film lovers together online and in specially designed experiences and screenings of classic and contemporary films.
Nelson Mandela Square and Sandton City will be the hub of the festival with screenings at the Auto & General Theatre on the Square and Ster-Kinekor Sandton. Other venues across Joburg include Bioscope in Maboneng, Constitution Hill, Cinema Nouveau Rosebank and Kings Cinema in Alexandra.
For more information on the Joburg Film Festival go to: