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MultiChoice Talent Factory: feature films produced by the Academy’s Class of 2019!


 Savannah Skies’ and ‘The Painting’  launched at an exclusive VIP screening  

·         Films to also make their debut on DStv’s Zambezi Magic

Two original feature films produced by students at the MultiChoice Talent Factory Academy for Southern Africa were  given a joint premiere in Lusaka last week and will now be given greater exposure across the region.

Liz Dziva, publicity and public relations manager of MultiChoice Zimbabwe said the films were Savannah Skies and The Painting, produced entirely by the MTF Academy’s 2018-2019 class, and which were  given a VIP premiere on Friday August 30.

“The films result from a full year of training and practical activity experienced by the 20 students at the Academy, among whom are two Zimbabweans, Nobert Mapfoche and Rutendo Mahofa,” she said.

“These films will get greater exposure in the next two weeks, when they will be broadcast on DStv to enable audiences across Southern Africa to enjoy them.”

The MTF Academy in Lusaka hosts 20 students from across Southern Africa, who are being given an opportunity to increase their skills and knowledge base with a view to careers in the television and film industry in Africa. Two other academies, one in Nairobi and the other in Lagos, are each hosting 20 students from their respective regions of East and West Africa, and are undertaking similar exercises as part of the MultiChoice Talent Factory initiative by MultiChoice Africa to provide a stimulus to the continent’s production industry.

A second intake will be welcomed into the three academies for 2019-2020 this October and two more Zimbabweans will be among the 20 students in the Southern African academy in Lusaka: . Nkosilesisa Ncube and Nelson Madzima, both of Bulawayo.

Berry Lwando, who is head of the Lusaka academy, is delighted with the feature films produced by his students, which were viewed at the premiere by an audience of industry stakeholders and film aficionados from across Southern Africa.

“The inaugural MTF class of 2018-2019 is thrilled to tell two authentic African stories developed and produced by these young creatives on the eve of their graduation,” he said.

“This is their chance to show the industry how they’ve applied their intensive film training and industry immersion.  I am proud to see these young filmmakers’ names on the credit roll.”

The Painting is a horror film conceptualised and written by Nikita Mokgware and directed by Emanuel Goncalves. The storyline involves a pregnant abstract painter who lives with her husband and son.  The painter is struggling to sell her work due to them not being ‘African’ enough.  One morning, she discovers a painting in her house of a woman in full traditional Bemba attire with all the cultural trappings. This feature film stars award-winning actor Leo Simukoko, actress and poet Chitalu Kaibele, Barbara Mwaramidze and Sweddy Mwansa alongside a number of budding Zambian actors.

 Savannah Skies is a romantic drama film conceptualised and written by Ludmila Mero and Muchemwa Sinkala. It is directed by Joshua Kafumukache It is set around a young woman, who after being left with little to no choice, in an attempt to save her father, is forced into a marriage. She must navigate her way in a new household, defying her conniving mother-in-law as she pursues her education and learns of an unconfessed love that has been with her all along.  Well-known faces such as famous former Kabanana actress Phenny Walubita who plays the main antagonist role will be seen on screen as well as Angela Nachilongo and a number of new faces.

 DStv viewers will get the opportunity to witness the fruits of the MTF Academy’s labour when the films air on Zambezi Magic channel 160. The Painting will be broadcast on Friday September 6 at 9.30pm, while Savannah Skies will air on Friday September 13, also a 9.30pm.  They will be available on Showmax from Thursday September 12.

  “We in Zimbabwe are delighted that at this early stage the students are providing input into the local film and television industry, and this will set the groundwork for future contribution and, resulting from that, expansion of the production industry,” said Ms Dziva


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Byron Adonis Mutingwende