South Africa Picks Real-Life Robin Hood Tale ‘Sew the Winter to My Skin’ for Oscars
5 October 2018
Jahmil X.T. Qubeka’s “Sew the Winter to My Skin,” about a real mid-century outlaw and his Robin Hood-style exploits, is South Africa’s submission for the foreign-language Oscar race. The movie, which world premiered in the Toronto Intl. Film Festival, was selected by the National Film & Video Foundation (NFVF) on Friday.
Written and directed by Qubeka, “Winter” is an adventure epic inspired by the story of John Kepe, who eluded authorities in South Africa’s rugged Boschberg Mountains for 12 years as he stole from wealthy white landowners and gave to the black poor. His exploits made him a folk hero to his own people and a public enemy in the eyes of the apartheid government.
The selection committee lauded what it described as “an unmistakable, bold South African voice that tackles historical and contemporary issues, in both South Africa and the world.” Describing Qubeka’s cinematic technique as “visionary and bold,” it praised the film as a “skillfully crafted cinematic and musical journey.”