A SEASON OF GROUNDBREAKING FILMS FROM SOUTH AFRICA
SOUTH AFRICA AT 20: THE FREEDOM TOUR is the name of a truly ground breaking season of South African films that will screen in cinemas across the UK from October 2014 to February 2015. A high quality programme of 11 titles will showcase brand new work alongside re-mastered classics by a diverse group of hugely talented South African filmmakers, some of whom will be visiting the UK to introduce their own films and to host post-screening discussions. Venues include Aberystwyth Arts Centre, London Albany, Hackney Picturehouse, Cambridge Picturehouse, Glasgow Centre for Contemporary Arts, Edinburgh Filmhouse, Birmingham mac, Cardigan Mwldan, Bangor Pontio, Bracknell South Hill Park, Swansea Taliesin, Newcastle Tyneside Cinema, Bristol Watershed and many more.
Says SA at 20 director and executive producer Lizelle Bisschoff (left):“South Africa at 20: The Freedom Tour will bring a hugely exciting selection of South African cinema, past and present, to audiences all over the UK. The timing could not be more appropriate; South Africa is celebrating its second decade of democracy and freedom this year, and the eyes of the world are on this young nation. “With Mandela’s sad passing in December last year, the country is now forced to tackle its future head-on; to learn from the wisdoms and mistakes of the past, and to listen to the voices, young and old, that advocate for a better, brighter future. Film has become a primary creative tool for expressing the realities, hopes and dreams of this rainbow nation, and the selection of films in The Freedom Tour is as diverse as the colours of the country itself. From previously banned anti-apartheid classics and probing contemporary documentaries, to gritty dramas and world-class animation, The Freedom Tour will tell the stories of South Africa in all their diversity.”
All the films chosen for South Africa at 20 – fiction and documentary – depict the history, cultures and stories of South Africa and are grouped in three themes:
- Come Back, Africa (Dir: Lionel Rogosin, 1959)
- 1994: The Bloody Miracle (Dir: Meg Rickards, 2013)
- Soft Vengeance: Albie Sachs and the New South Africa (Abby Ginzberg)
- Four Corners (Dir: Ian Gabriel, 2014)
- Life Above All (Dir: Oliver Schmitz, 2011)
- Miners Shot Down (Dir: Rehad Desai. 2014)
- Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me (Dir: Khalo Matabane, 2014)
Young South African Voices:
- Felix (Dir: Roberta Durrant, 2013)
- Future Sounds of Mzansi (Dir: Spoek Mathambo & Lebogang Rasethaba, 2014)
- Hear Me Move (Dir: Scottnes L. Smith, 2014)
- Khumba (Dir: Anthony Silverston, 2013)
October 12th Birmingham mac Life Above All
October 13th Swansea Taliesin Dear Mandela, Felix
October 14th Hereford Courtyard White Wedding
October 15th-18th London Albany The African Cypher, Tsotsi, Khumba, Sea Point Days
October 19th London Stratford East PictureHouse The African Cypher, The Future
Sounds of Mzansi
October 20th-22nd Cardiff Chapter Arts Centre 1994: Bloody Miracle, Tsotsi, Four Corners,
Life Above All
October 24th Hereford Courtyard Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me
October 24th-25th Cardiff Chapter Arts Centre Siliva the Zulu, Felix, Hear Me Move
October 25th 26th Edinburgh Filmhouse Come Back Africa, Khumba, Siliva the Zulu
October 25th-27th Bracknell South Hill Park Felix, Khumba, Come Back Africa, Mpantsula
October 27th Aberystwyth Arts Centre Dear Mandela, Four Corners
October 29th Edinburgh Filmhouse Four Corners
October 30th Glasgow Film Theatre Khumba
The season will also include one-off screenings of a further 14 titles including the 2006 Oscar winning Tsotsi, the multi-award winning documentary Dear Mandela, the brilliant 1987 Mapantsula directed by the then 27 year old Oliver Schmitz, the fascinating 2010 documentary Surfing Soweto about trains rather than waves, and the hilarious romantic comedy White Wedding which was South Africa’s official submission to the 82nd Academy Awards for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Marking the 20th anniversary of democratic elections in South Africa, SA At 20: The Film Tour
is a collaboration between the five African film festivals in the UK:
Africa in Motion (AiM) Film Festival in Scotland
Film Africa in London
Afrika Eye in Bristol
Watch-Africa in Wales
Cambridge African Film Festival
Directors Meg Rickards, Ian Gabriel, Khalo Matabane, Scottness L Smith, and choreographer Paul Modjadji
Will be visiting the UK to introduce their films and take part in talks, workshops and discussions.
Meg Rickards is the director of 1994: The Bloody Miracle, a chilling look at how those who were determined to derail democracy in South Africa 20 years ago have made an uneasy peace with the Rainbow Nation.
Screenings: (venue) November 1st, Cambridge/November 3rd, Glasgow/November 4th, Edinburgh/November 5th
Ian Gabriel is the director of Four Corners, a high-octane, multi-thread coming of age crime drama set in the unique and volatile South African prison and gangland subculture of the Cape Flats townships.
Screenings: Cambridge/November 5th, Glasgow/November 6th, (venue)/November 7th
Khalo Matabane, director of Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me, asks global thinkers, Apartheid-victims and Mandela’s entourage to classify Nelson Mandela’s achievements, thereby providing a multi-faceted approach to his myth.
Screenings: Edinburgh/November 6th, (venue)/November 7th-9th, (venue)/November 9th
Scottness Smith is the director and Paul Modjadji the choreographer of the highly entertaining Hear Me Move in which Muzi, the son of a pantsula dancer (the highly energetic dance form that originated in the black suburbs of South Africa during the Apartheid era) embarks on a journey of self-discovery.
Screenings: Glasgow/November 5th, (venue)/November 7th and 8th.
Other standout titles include Come Back Africa co-written, directed and produced by Lionel Rogosin in 1959. Shot clandestinely and featuring, among others, a young Miriam Makeba, this film brings to life the injustices of the apartheid system in a unique way. It remains a work of historical and cultural importance by preserving the unique heritage of the townships of South Africa in the 1950s.
Miners Shot Down by director Rehad Desai commemorates the terrible events of 2012 when mineworkers in one of South Africa’s biggest platinum mines began an isolated fight against the combined forces of the mine owners, Lonmin. The strike ended in one of the most brutal tragedies of the post-apartheid era.
Khumba directed by Anthony Silverston is about a half-striped zebra who leaves home in search of the magic waterhole that will cure his anomaly. This colourful animation features the voices of Jake T. Austin, Steve Buscemi, Loretta Devine, Laurence Fishburne, Richard E. Grant, and Liam Neeson.