An online portal has been launched as part of the ongoing rollout of activities of the MultiChoice Talent Factory, an initiative that aims at increasing the skills base in Africa’s film and television production industry.
Liz Dziva, publicity and public relations manager of MultiChoice Zimbabwe, said the MTF Portal was the latest touch point in the overall MultiChoice Talent Factory programme and provided a platform for networking, collaboration and opportunity identification among existing and new professionals in the industry.
The MultiChoice Talent Factory programme has already seen the establishment of training academies in three continental hubs: Lagos in Nigeria for West Africa; Nairobi in Kenya for East Africa and Lusaka in Zambia for Southern Africa. At each of these academies a group of 20 students from the regions concerned is involved in a concentrated training programme designed to create industry operatives of the highest calibre.
Also starting soon will be Master Classes for industry professionals in each country, including Zimbabwe, and these will also be aimed at upgrading skills and knowledge, extending communication and collaboration and laying down a network of highly effective operatives across the continent.
The MTF Portal became operational on Tuesday March 19 and the launch was marked in Harare with a gathering of industry personalities at the Zimbabwe International Film Festive Trust premises in Kensington. The portal is accessible at www.multichoicetalentfactory.com and is an interactive means of profiling and connecting Africa’s industry creatives and bringing talent and opportunities together in one forum.
Said Ms Dziva: “The digital portal will allow film-makers across the continent to network, find talent and showcase their work. Access to the portal is through registration onwww.multichoicetalentfactory.com which will serve as an authoritative source of industry news and is supported by MultiChoice’s long-standing position as Africa’s leading storyteller. Users of the portal, including up-and-coming talent and existing industry professionals, can also network with each other, connect and collaborate. The MTF Portal will provide information on the MTF Academies, which started their one-year programme in October last year, and will also showcase information on the Master Classes.”
The MTF initiative is a significant investment from MultiChoice to improve quality of work and support the production of local content across the continent.
“The steadily increasing nature of cross-continental interaction means that film-makers are looking for networks beyond their own borders. A producer in Nigeria is keen to know if it is possible to co-produce in Angola, for example, with access to local talent and production partners. The portal is especially aimed at users of mobile devices and is, therefore, accessible to any film-maker around the world,” said Ms Dziva.
The director of the MTF Academy in Southern Africa, Lusaka-based Berry Lwando, said the portal was the obvious next step for the industry in the MTF rollout.
“Our progression as African storytellers has been so rapid in recent years that the timing couldn’t be more perfect for the establishment of the portal,” he said.
“Our industry’s professionals have always been able to connect with one another, but not as easily and efficiently as the industry has demanded. With the portal, we can access a greater number of talents and knowledge and share them across the world, with whoever needs to know about them. It’s an incredible time to be working in African film and television.”