Five Fingers for Marseilles, a contemporary South African western set in the rugged badlands of the Eastern Cape, will be in official competition at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), to be held from 7 to 17 September. This will also be the film’s world premiere.
Directed by Michael Matthews and written by Sean Drummond, the film is a predominantly Sesotho, western-inspired tale of an outlaw who returns home after years on the run, and finds a chance for redemption.
“A major motion picture of this scale, complexity and intent has never before been made in South Africa,” says producer Asger Hussain.
An all-star local cast
Vuyo Dabula heads an all-star cast that includes Hamilton Dhlamini, Zethu Dlomo, Kenneth Nkosi, Mduduzi Mabaso, Aubrey Poolo, Lizwi Vilakazi, Warren Masemola, Dean Fourie, Anthony Oseyemi, Brendon Daniels and Jerry Mofokeng. Cast by acclaimed casting director Moonyeenn Lee, the film also features people from local Eastern Cape communities in supporting roles, and introduces to the big screen Toka Mtabane, Vuyo Novokoza, Ntsika Tiyo, Sibusiso Bottoman, Abongile Sithole, and Qhawe Soroshi.
It tells the story of how, 20 years ago, the young ‘Five Fingers’ fought for the rural town of Marseilles, against brutal police oppression. Now, after fleeing in disgrace, Tau returns, seeking peace. Finding the town under new threat, he must reluctantly fight to free it. Will the Five Fingers stand again?
Writer Sean Drummond says the timing of the film is optimal. “Good westerns always had socio-political undercurrents running through them,” says Drummond. “By putting a highly entertaining, contemporary spin on this South African Western, the film explores subjects that resonate right now with many people.”