9 April 2019


Encounters Fest revamps leadership

Mandisa Ralane ( formally Zitha) returns as director of Encounters South African International Documentary Festival

The Encounters South African International Documentary Festival has announced the appointment of Mandisa Ralane as Festival Director for its 21st edition this June.

Mandisa returns to the helm after successfully leading the Festival as director from 2007 to 2012, where she helped Encounters confirm its place as Africa’s premier documentary film festival.

During her time as festival director, Mandisa acted as an ambassador for documentary films in general and the South African film industry in particular, both locally and internationally.

She was recognised in the Mail and Guardian: Top 100 Women 2011 for the Arts and Culture Sector; spoke at The 2007 International Documentary Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) and The Thessaloniki Documentary Festival in Greece; and sat on the Main Jury at the 2010 Tempo Documentary Festival in Sweden and on the 2010 BBC MyWorld Competition Jury.

Mandisa helped set up Encounters’ partnership with Sichuan TV Festival in China, which saw seven local documentaries screened and two local filmmakers hosted in China; Encounters’ partnership with the French Embassy, where she coordinated the first Africadoc SA residency, a writing residency designed for the development of African documentary cinema; and Encounters’ 2012 partnership with Al Jazeera English, which saw 20 African documentaries pitch to the global broadcaster. After a sojourn of Management in the Academic and Government sector she returns with a wealth of new experience for her return as director of the festival.

Encounters has also announced the appointment of two new board members, Moroba Nkawe and Azania Muendane, both highly experienced and accomplished film professionals.

With over fifteen years of experience in the industry, Moroba Nkawe produced several award-winning productions at Dv8 Films including “Shirley Adams” by Oliver Hermanus, “Izulu Lami” by Madoda Ncayiyana and “Zimbabwe” by Darrell Roodt. Moroba went on to co-produce “State of Violence” by Khalo Matabane, line produce “Sleeper’s Wake” by Barry Berk and “Layla Fourie” by Pia Marais, a German-South African co-production as well as producing “Mandela’s Gun” by John Irvin, a South African-Algerian-UK co-production. She has also produced for television, including the ground-breaking drama series Room 9. She has served on the advisory panel of the National Film and Video Foundation and most recently joined Hollard Film Guarantors as Production Executive, where she oversees the production of feature films, documentaries and television series, from financing to delivery. Highly respected by her peers, Moroba is passionate about film and television and thrives to make a meaningful contribution to the growing South African industry.

From June 6-16th June Encounters will celebrate 21 years as Africa’s leading documentary film festival. It is widely recognised as the premier non-fiction film festival on the continent, featuring compelling documentaries with strong narrative structures that are highly cinematic. Films with thoughtful, character-driven storytelling that add a necessary dimension to our understanding of the news and the fake news, the hot button issues, other people’s lives and, above all, ourselves and our place in the world.

Source: Press Release


Netflix Hires Ghettuba To Manage African Original Series

Netflix has named Kenya's Dorothy Ghettuba, the Producer who is also founder and CEO of Spielworks Media, as its new Manager for International Original Series for Africa.

Dorothy Ghetubba will be joining the subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) giant as Netflix's Manager for International Originals for the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region as from June. Her main task in the role will be to commission more content for and from the African continent.

Dorothy Ghetubba will be relocating to work directly from Netflix's headquarters in Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

Netflix released a statement saying that the streaming service is excited to confirm that Dorothy has been appointed to manage the International Originals group, which produces favourite original series across the globe, such as Baby, The Protector and Dark.

At her Nairobi-based company Spielworks Media that she launched over a decade ago, Dorothy Ghettuba has assisted in the production of many TV series for local Kenyan TV channels. She has produced shows like Saints, Block D, Ladies 1st, Higher Learning, the civic education drama programme Know Your Constitution, as well as other shows such as Lies that Bind for M-Net's Africa Magic channel on MultiChoice's DStv pay-TV platform.

Source: TeeVee Blogspot

Veteran film producer Bill Troskie (84) dies

 Bill TroskieCape Town – Veteran South African film producer, Bill Troskie, has died. He was 84.

Bill the older brother of Boet Troskie, died in Bloemfontein on Thursday night following an extended illness. Mireschen Troskie-Marx, speaking on behalf of the family, told the OFM radio station in the Free State that the family is deeply saddened by the death of the businessman, whose funeral will take place on 12 April at the Dutch Reformed Church Bloemfontein North known as the Klipkerk.

Bill and Boet created their banner, Mimosa Films, in 1964 in Bloemfontein and teamed up with the legendary film director Jamie Uys to produce various South African films.

These went on to achieve blockbuster status worldwide thanks to the film production and distribution company's interaction with Hollywood as one of the first and only of its kind in South Africa working with the United States' film industry at a time when the idea of "Hollywood" for the local biz seemed a faraway and elusive dream.

Following Three Wise Men, the film was followed by Lost in the Desert/Dirkie, Animals are Beautiful People that won a Golden Globe, Funny People I, Funny People II, The Gods Must be Crazy I and The Gods Must be Crazy II which all enjoyed massive success at the South African and international box office.

Bill's first film as producer was Staal Burger (1969) and he went on to produce Die Rebel (1976), Sonja (1978), Night of the Puppets (1979) and Beloftes van Môre (1981).

The Gods Must be Crazy holds the record as the most commercially successful release in the history of South Africa's film industry for a South African produced film.

With the distribution of The Gods Must be Crazy (1980) Bill took over operations of Mimosa Films as acting CEO for a few years when his brother Boet moved to America to oversee the film's contract deals.

Mimosa Films is widely considered South Africa's most successful film production and distribution company, and the first South African company to pave the way to stardom in Hollywood. Later Bill Troskie and his wife, Yvonne, started several other businesses.

Source: Channel 24