Isidongo scoops best TV director at SAFTAS

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Winners of the South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAS) were announced 20 Feb. 2011 at an award ceremony held at Madame Zingara's Theatre of Dreams. The event was hosted by South Africa’s popular personalities Thami Ngubeni and Joey Rasdien.

"We congratulate all the winners in the Non-Fiction categories and wish them the best for their future projects. The SAFTAs acknowledge all productions in both Fiction and Non-fiction awards sessions as they play a very significant role in the growth of our industry," says Eddie Mbalo NFVF CEO.

The guests, made up of the industry, government representatives and industry personalities welcomed the results as they were categorically presented. Winners for the night included Into the Dragon’s Lair which won Best Wildlife Programme, Best Wildlife Director and Best Wildlife Cinematographer. The programme went on to receive two special mentions for Music Director and Sound Design.

Other programmes that received accolades include Let’s chat with Mel for Best Talk Show, All Access for Best Magazine Show, Agter die Berger for Best Student Film, Ed and Eppa in the Wild for Best Youth & Children programme, A Country Imagined for Best Factual Educational Entertainment and Karoo for Best Short Film. The list of all the winners is attached.

Gearhouse South Africa, which this year provides technical support for both the SAFTAS ceremonies, joined in celebrating the achievements of the industry. Robyn D'Alessandro, Gearhouse National Marketing Manager had this to say, "Although Gearhouse' involvement with the Film and Television industry is in the area of technical supply, we are firm supporters of the wealth of talent that abounds in this industry. We are proud to be able to contribute to the success of the South Africa Film and Television Awards in celebration of South Africa's achievements in this field."

The SAFTAs are industry awards of which the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) of South Africa are the industry appointed custodians. The award's main objective is to honour, celebrate and promote the creativity, quality and excellence of South African, film and television talent, and encourage entrepreneurship and the development of new talent in the industry.

The second session of the 5th SAFTAs awarding the Fiction Categories were held on Sunday 27th February at Madame Zingara's Theatre of Dreams in Jo’Burg.
In the Feature Film category, Life, Above All came on top winning six awards out of eleven nominations. The film won the Best Feature Film, Best Feature Film Actress for Khomotso Manyaka as Chanda, Best Feature Film Supporting Actress for Harriet Manamela as Mrs. Tafa, Best Feature Film Ensemble, and the film’s director, Oliver Schmitz, won Ster-Kinekor Theatres' Best Feature Film Director Award, receiving a cash prize of R20 000.

Other winners included: Best Documentary (Jammer as ek so Bitter by Black Brain Productions); Best TV Drama (Erfsondes by Imani Media);Best TV Drama Actor
(Vusi Kunene  in Soul City); Best TV Drama Director (Amanda Lane for 4 Play);
and Best TV Soap Director (Isidingo directing team for Isidingo).