Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Miners Shot Down wins Emmy: A Big Congratulations to Rehad Desai

Rehad Desai
Just to give Rehad Desai and the team at Uhuru Productions the SOS Coalition's warmest and resounding congratulations for being awarded an Emmy for Miners Shot Down.

In spite of it being a singularly important documentary and text in South Africa's socio-political landscape, and thousands of calls by ordinary people for it to be screened on our national public broadcaster, the SABC, and e-tv, it has yet to make it into our screens.

As we celebrate this powerful film and applaud all involved in its production, let's also take a moment to add our names to the thousands who have demanded that it be screened by our free-to-air broadcasters. 


M-NET is very excited to announce that entries to the M-Net Magic in Motion Academy for 2016 is open.  Deadline to enter is 11 December 2015.

For more information, guidelines and to enter go to their website.


The annual Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) and the Durban FilmMart (DFM) have announced the dates for next year’s editions, which take place almost a month earlier than the usual July dates. The DIFF will now take place from June 16 to 26, 2016 while the DFM will take place from 17 to 20 June, 2016.

The events have been rescheduled due to a clash with the 21st International Aids Conference, which takes place at the end of Jul 2016. The AIDS conference will be using both the Elangeni and Maharani hotels, which are traditionally used as a festival and market hub.

DIFF is hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts and 2016 will mark its 37th edition.  “Although it will require some concerted communication efforts, we are positive about the move to June,” says Kishore Gobardan Director of Professional Services in the College of Humanities at UKZN in which the CCA is housed. “The festival will now open on the Youth Day, which may free up people to take advantage of a possible long weekend, and creates thematic opportunities for the festival to look at the role of youth within the industry.”

The DFM is a joint project of the eThekwini Municipality’s industry arm, the Durban Film Office and the DIFF, and 2016 marks its 7th edition. Toni Monty the Head of Durban Film Office says, “This may work well in favour of the DFM and DIFF because it is just before the July summer holidays in Europe which is traditionally used as a recess period for film-makers, and that often impacts on their availability in July.”

The DIFF will soon be calling for submissions for the 2016 edition while the Durban FilmMart has already made a call for submissions of film projects with the due date being December 14, 2015.

The 9th Talents Durban the intensive programme of seminars, hands-on training, workshops and industry networking activities in partnership with Berlinale Talents will take place from June 17-21, 2016.

For further information about the DIFF go to www.durbanfilmfestival.co.za and for the DFM go to www.durbanfilmmart.co.za.

Phone: +27 (0)31 260 2506/1816
Fax: +27 (0)31 260 3074 
Email: diff@ukzn.ac.za

The festival is hosted by the Centre for Creative Arts, University of KwaZulu-Natal and is supported by the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development and Tourism, the KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission, the City of Durban and other valued funders and partners.

Press release by and media queries:
Sharlene Versfeld 
Versfeld & Associates: The Communication Works
+27 (0)31 811 5628 
+27 (0)83 326 3235 
Twitter @sharlvers 

Skype: sharlene.versfeld

Entries Open: 4th Mumbai Shorts International Film Festival 2015

4th Mumbai Shorts International Film Festival 2015, India

Entries Open For: Short Films | Documentaries | Animations | Music Videos

Submission Deadline: 25 Nov 2015

To submit your entry kindly follow the link:


Festival Date: 12 Dec 2015 | Mumbai, India

Key Highlights:

Film Screenings | Short Film Market | Screenplay incubation | Master Classes | Networking

Team 4th MSIFF-2015, India

Tel: +91 120-4129059 | +91 9582320467 |  info.mumbai@miniboxoffice.com

Friday, November 20, 2015

Call for films: Festival International de Films de Femmes

38th edition: 18-27 March 2016

The Festival International de Films de Femmes - hosted at the Maison des Arts de Créteil in France - is a one-of-the-kind annual film event, a major worldwide showcase for women filmmakers. 

As a privileged platform for filmmakers, it has become over the years the most important professional event on major international women’s cinema d’ auteur, long-time discriminated and still poorly distributed. 

The Festival was created in 1979 at a time when women filmmakers began to make their voices heard. From this date on, the Festival serves these independent directors as they take their first steps and as they continue their journey into their own cinematographic commitment.

Product of the seventies feminist movement since its creation, the Festival has been the heir to two schools of thought.

  1. The feminist movement, with the conviction that women exist as human beings, but also as members of society. 
  2. From the start, the Festival was committed to women filmmaker as artists.

Thus during the last 38 years, we have been dedicated to women filmmakers, actresses, authors, film technicians. We supported their research and highly praised their innovations, their standpoints and their commitments. These women filmmakers have often made it their priority to explore the outreach of human qualities through both their female and male characters, questioning gender matters in rich, multiple portraits that respond to our needs of identification according to a range of essential liberating issues. Even today at the threshold of its thirty eighth edition, the Festival continues to astound by the quality of both the films it presents and the laboratory for expression it has created. Jackie Buet is its founder and director.

With over 1200 movies submitted each year, the international competition encourages diversity and innovation. It has been the door to success for unknown brilliant female talents as well as the stage to present the latest works of prestigious female directors, many of whom we follow faithfully from their debut films.

The deadline is 30 November 2015.

Submit your films here

For the website of the Festival click here.

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CALL FOR ENTRIES 2016: La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde

La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde has been created by the Institut français, in partnership with France Médias Monde - France 24, RFI, Monte Carlo Doualyia - and the International Organisation of la Francophonie to support talented new filmmakers from Southern and emerging countries. 

This professional programme has been developed in close association with the Festival de Cannes and the Marché du Film to invite ten filmmakers who are working on their 1st or 2nd feature-length film. 

Accompanied by their producers, selected directors will receive personalised support adapted to their project and professional experience, improve their market position, develop their professional network by meeting key players of the industry and live a unique experience in one of the most important festivals.

You must register online before November 23rd, 2015.

Click here

A maximum of 120 projects will be accepted.


  • Directors must come from one of the eligible countries (list available on the website)
  • The project must be the director’s 1st or 2nd feature-length film (fiction, documentary or animation)
  • The project must have a local producer, or a producer from one of the eligible countries, who has produced a short or feature-length film in the past five years
  • Each director or production company may only submit one film project
  • Co-producers may not apply but they must appear in the registration form
  • The director and/or the producer must speak English
  • The film’s budget must be less than €3 million. 


Since 2009, La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde has welcomed over 108 producers and directors coming from 52 countries. Some of these participants have recently been selected in the most prestigious international festivals: Hoang Diep Nguyen (La Fabrique 2012), selected in Venice and in Toronto in 2014, Anita Rocha da Silveira (La Fabrique 2014) selected in Venice in 2015, Michel K. Zongo (La Fabrique 2013) and Midi Z. (La Fabrique 2012) selected in Berlin in 2014. Since 2012, eleven projects have received the World Cinema Support (Aide aux cinémas du monde). 

Follow the news on La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde follow our facebook group!

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Call for Films: Urban Films Festival 2016

Created by RStyle and supported by the CNC (French National Cinematographic Center), the Urban Films Festival is, in France, the main international films festival dedicated to the city and to all practices and lifestyles that come from it. Over 10 years, this festival created a reference by discovering films related to the city: Stories, dance, movement, communities, street culture, sports, all of the aspects of the city and urban cultures are represented.

This Urban Films Festival proposes also: Screenings of historical or unreleased films about Hip Hop Movement, parties, professional meetings, and a short-movie competition animated by a famous jury - professionals from the cinematographic industry, urban culture activists or journalists. 

For this occasion, talented film-makers of all ages and from all over the world – from Seoul to Rio passing by Seattle, Paris or Ouagadougou – are invited to submit their films by a web channel (YouTube or Vimeo) by February 28, 2016.

4 Categories of films will be awarded:

  • Fictions: 15 min max.
  • Animations: 15 min max.
  • Performances: 7 min max.
  • Documentaries: 17 min max.

Best directors from each category will be rewarded by a grant, purchase and distribution of their films or by materials.

Submit your movies before February 28, 2016 to: participation@urbanfilmsfestival.com

Download the application form here.

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CALL FOR ENTRIES: REALNESS - An African Screenwriters Residency

Urucu Media, under the mentorship of Berlinale Talents, in partnership with Nirox, Durban Filmmart, Restless Talent Management, The French Institute of South Africa and Institute Français's Cinémas du Monde proudly presents REALNESS, a screenwriters residency for a new generation of African cinema.

From June to August 2016, 5 screenwriters will be invited to attend a seven-week residency to develop a new draft of their original feature screenplays. The aim of REALNESS is to provide the necessary time, space and support to help the continent's best emerging writing talents hone their unique cinematic vision.

Week 1: The residency will kick off on 16 June 2016 with an introductory week at Durban Filmmart, Africa's top co-production market. Residents will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in films, attend seminars and present their projects to industry professionals for feedback. Each resident will prepare a public presentation of their project at the end of the week.

Week 2-6: Residents will be transported to the Nirox artists residency in  the Cradle of Humankind, where they will spend six weeks working in a tranquil and nurturing living environment. During the first week, top international script consultants will conduct workshops and one-on-one sessions with the residents. Thereafter, residents will work at their own pace, with ongoing support in the form of workgroups with fellow writers, curated film screenings, producer-led case studies and discussions with visiting industry speakers. 

Week 7: In the final week, residents will have a debriefing and follow up Skype-sessions with their consultants. After leaving the residency, writers will be invited to submit a new draft of their screenplay by 30 September 2016. The most promising project to emerge from REALNESS will be invited and funded to participate in the prestigious La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde in Cannes, 2017. 

REALNESS recognizes the real-life demands of most writers and that taking time to develop a screenplay is not always economically viable. To this end, residents will receive a stipend of R15 000 and all food and accommodation expenses will be covered for the duration of their stay. Please note that residents will be responsible for their own travel costs to and from the residency. We will assist in efforts to obtain sponsorship from country culture desks, embassies & other interested institutions.

While the residency will be conducted in English, REALNESS aims to accommodate non-English speaking participants by providing consultation in French and/or Portuguese where necessary.


Please note, the submission window is from 1 November 2015 - 31 January 2016 (or until 120 applications have been received, whichever comes first)

Applicants must submit ONE PDF dossier containing:

  1. a motivation for wanting to participate in REALNESS (1 page) 
  2. a synopsis of the proposed feature project (1 page)
  3. a treatment of the proposed feature project (6 pages)
  4. a draft of the screenplay 
  5. a writer's note of intention (1 page)
  6. a short biography (1 paragraph)
  7. two links to samples of previously produced work, uploaded to vimeo. If selected, residents will be required to donate one copy of their previous work to the Nirox film library. 

The call is open to screenwriters from across the African continent and selection will be based on artistic merit. REALNESS will hold no legal claim over the work once the residency is completed.

All submitted material must be in English. A committee appointed by Urucu and their partners will read the project entries and conduct interviews with a shortlist of candidates early in March. The REALNESS selection will be announced at an event hosted by the pavilion Les Cinemas du Monde in Cannes, 2016.

Please submit dossiers to realness@urucumedia.com

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Short film competition: Tremplin Jeunes Réalisateurs Africains

The Afrique sur Bièvre association, located 3 km south of Paris, aims at the promotion of the cultures of the African continent through its cinematographies, especially by the organisation every year since 2007 of the Ciné Regards Africains Festival. In November 2016, that will be its 10th issue.

For this occasion and within the framework of its objectives, the association has created the prize “Tremplin jeunes réalisateurs – Ciné Regards Africains” in order to boost the careers of young film-makers who have just completed their university studies in African cinema schools.

The competition is patronized by Abderrahmane Sissako: it is a great honour both for the competitors and Afrique sur Bièvre.

Competition is open up to 1st December 2015. 

Rules, regulations and application form are available on www.asurb.com

Results will be announced not later than 31st March 2016.

This award is designed to honour a graduation film directed by a student in an African film school, in each of the two categories: documentary and drama. 

Both prize-winning films will be screened during the “Ciné Regards Africains” festival in November 2016 and both directors will be invited to take part in this event. The purpose is to facilitate exchanges with the public, cinema professionals and students.

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Thursday, November 12, 2015

M-Net's MiM Academy searches for class of 2016

In 2015, the M-Net Magic in Motion (MiM) Academy gave a group of top film and TV graduates the opportunity of a lifetime. Twelve students were selected as part of a year-long, paid work-readiness programme, where they engaged closely with some of the country’s leading producers and productions, while gaining an in-depth, wide- ranging experience of the industry. The academy is part of M-Net’s business-aligned CSI initiative which aims to help transform one of the nation’s most influential sectors.

On 5 November 2015, at a special industry event in Johannesburg, M-Net’s CEO Yolisa Phahle announced that the video entertainment company is now inviting applications for year two of the project.

“In Magic in Motion, M-Net spotlights the philosophy that given an opportunity, an empowered new generation of filmmakers and TV professionals will rise to take their place at the forefront of our sector. I’ve been honoured to witness the passion and pride with which our 2015 interns have converted their vast potential into measurable success; and it fills me with confidence for the future of South African storytelling. Therefore, I am proud to announce that in 2016, M-Net will expand the Magic in Motion Academy to now include 20 interns.”

Reiterating that the academy is structured around the film and TV industry’s need to develop the local talent pipeline, build industry capacity and contribute to the economic strength of the country, Phahle noted that collaboration has been a cornerstone of the project.

“I must extend M-Net’s sincere thanks to our partner production companies for their immense support of the initiative. It is due to their passion and willingness to take our interns under their wing that we are able to build on the achievements of the first year. Further, we are very grateful for the efforts of leading tertiary institutions and industry-related organisations that have all seen the value of the project and have worked with us to ensure its success.”

Speaking before an audience that included key stakeholders, Phahle also welcomed deputy minister in the presidency, Buti Manamela, who gave the event’s keynote address during which he spoke about the role of developmental initiatives in the context of nation-building.

In addition, Magic in Motion Academy director Bobby Heaney shared his thoughts on the initiative, stating that the impact of the project would continue to resonate meaningfully for years to come. Also in attendance at the event were current 2015 MiM Academy interns fresh off their creation of two movies for Mzansi Magic (DStv channel 161). Their drama Ilizwi debuts on 12 December, whilst their comedy The Ring premieres on 19 December.

In 2016, the academy will again offer its interns training in production commissioning, concept creation, script writing, producing, directing, cinematography, sound, art direction, editing, post-production, studio and location shoots, and more. Interns will also participate in several respected professional film and TV productions across a variety of programming genres. Furthermore, they are expected to have regular specialist sessions with top practitioners in the theatre, film and TV world.

Designed to bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical implementation, the academy is focussed on delivering highly-employable professionals into a rapidly growing industry.

Entry criteria this year is as follows:

  • Applicants must be South African citizens who would have completed their qualification in 2014 or 2015.
  • Applications are open to strictly EE (Employment Equity) qualifying candidates (African, Coloured and Indian).
  • Applicants must hold a three-year qualification in drama, film, television or a related media field, from a recognised tertiary institution.
  • Applicants must have graduated, or must be expecting to graduate, with at least an overall B-aggregate.
  • Applicants must have had no previous permanent employment in the film and TV sector, with the exception of any work experience assignments necessary for the achievement of their qualification.

Would-be applicants must apply directly to M-Net before 11 December 2015 should they wish to participate in the 2016 Magic in Motion Academy.

For more information about the academy, its entry requirements and its objectives, visit the M-Net Magic in Motion website.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

FEDUSA Slams Irresponsible and Misleading Reporting And Calls For Urgent Ministerial Intervention

The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) condemns the utterances and recent media reporting on the so–called new independent and democratic trade union for artists, media and creatives; the South African Media Creative and Cultural Workers Union (SAMCCWU). 

Claims of being a bona fide trade union have proven to be factually incorrect, following investigations revealing that SAMCCWU is not registered in terms of the Labour Relations Act. FEDUSA’s affiliated union, UASA - "The Union, plays a critical role in this area through the South African Guild of Actors to ensure decent opportunities for actors in the entertainment industry through meaningful dialogue," emphasised Dennis George, FEDUSA General Secretary. "Moreover, the entertainment industry participants act as independent contractors," added George. 

The National Development Plan (NDP) sets the long-term nation building goals of fostering Constitutional values and the promotion of active citizenry. Hence, FEDUSA believes that social cohesion will further contribute to the ideals of the social compact by strengthening equity, social inclusion and working towards prosperity for all.

FEDUSA therefore appeals to the Minister of Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa, to exercise restraint in this matter and engage meaningfully within the parameters of the Labour Relations Act, where social dialogue with registered unions and federations forms the basis of progressive deliberations and industry development. FEDUSA believes that engagements with organisations that misrepresent and mislead information to the general public, could do more harm than good to both the Ministry as well as the entertainment industry, said George. 

By way of legislation, trade unions have to be registered with the Registrar of Labour Relations and are accountable to their members. Compliance with mandates, procedural matters and audited financials, amongst others, remains the guiding factors for sound operational and sustainable practices, emphasised George.   

FEDUSA denounces inaccurate and misconstrued conveyance of information via print and electronic media to the general public and demands swift action from Minister Mthethwa, compelling an urgent review and rectification of the matter at hand. "Organisations that lack real structure such as a constitution and a paid up membership base, do untold harm to the entertainment industry when they pretend to speak on behalf of an organisation that, in fact, does not exist," concluded George. 

SA Society of Cinematographers Award winners 2015

SASFED would like to congratulate all the winners of the 2015 SASC Visible Spectrum Awards. Well done everyone!

And they are: