Two Durban filmmakers, Noel Kok of NB Productions and Ntokozo Motloung of Ntozakhe Productions, were recently selected as part of a South African delegation to attend the prestigious Tribeca Film Festival in New York. The outbound trade mission, organised and funded by the Cape Film Commission, in partnership with the Department and Trade and Industry's SASS scheme, took place from 17 to 28 April and provided these local filmmakers with an opportunity to participate in an exciting programme of meetings and activities coordinated by the Cape Film Commission and the South African Consulate in New York.
The Cape Film Commission's CEO, Denis Lillie commented, “We would like to thank Toni Monty and everyone at the Durban Film Office for their invaluable support to this mission together with the support they gave their local filmmakers. We took the opportunity to create a platform for the 20 SA filmmakers in attendance to showcase their work to 150 representatives of the New York Film community at a special event hosted at the SA Consulate. At this event we also highlighted the prestigious Durban FilmMart and Durban International Film Festival and invited everyone to attend.”
The Tribeca Film Festival’s mission is to help filmmakers reach the broadest possible audience, enabling the international film community and general public to experience the power of cinema and promote New York City as a major filmmaking centre. The Tribeca Film Festival is well-known for being a diverse international film festival that supports emerging and established directors.
Twenty-eight year old film-maker, Ntokozo Motloung from KwaMashu is currently in production of a documentary called “Why I am a Sangoma” which follows the journey of five young women going through initiation school and leaving their lives behind to become traditional healers, and learning about nature and the environment.
“It was so magnificent to see the city of New York, it was just as you see it on the big screen,” enthuses Ntokozo, a graduate of the Wildlife Film School. “It was a wonderful experience to have visited so many different locations and to have had the opportunity to network with some of the industry’s biggest financiers and producers, which has helped me enormously in developing my project."
Qhawe Lama Qhawe (Hero of Heroes) is the title of Noel Kok’s current project, a 2D and 3D animated full-length feature film, which will be in isiZulu with English subtitles.
“For decades children around the world have looked up to their superheroes, called their names out in times of need and almost always imagined themselves as one, with super powers, the strength to do right, to protect society and the world and the physical strength to fight evil and villains. In South Africa and Africa our children continue to live by ideals set by Hollywood and the United States - believing in a superhero living a life so distant from their own.” says Kok. “So we have set out to make a film which speaks to this – our own African superheroes.”
“The experience of being at Tribeca felt very similar to the Durban International Film Festival and the Durban FilmMart with famous stars attached. “says Glenwood-based Kok. “Being there enabled me to further develop my project, and has helped to clarify the global stage, as well clearly spelling out what I need in order to operate in this space.”
“We are really pleased that these local filmmakers were given an opportunity to join the South African delegation to attend Tribeca, and applaud the Cape Film Commission for putting the initiative together.” says Toni Monty of the Durban Film Office.