Sunu Gonera’s Riding with Sugar starts filming in Cape Town

Hakeem Kae-Kazim as Mambo and Charles Mnene as Joshua (Photo credit: David Bloomer)

Afrocentric, inherently cool feature film Riding with Sugar has started shooting in Cape Town and promises to be a visual masterpiece. Written and directed by awarded filmmaker Sunu Gonera, Riding with Sugar is a coming-of-age, feel-good story about a young refugee who, despite many setbacks, finds his way, finds love and a chance to create a better life in Cape Town.

True to Gonera’s style, the film will have an unique African aesthetic with powerful, visually rich scenes and an undercurrent of passion and true grit.

With a British, Kenyan, Nigerian and South African cast, its highly anticipated 2019 release promises to wow audiences in South Africa, the continent and internationally.

Once a scholarship student with a great future, Joshua (Charles Mnene, UK) dreams of winning a BMX cycling championship as a means to finding a better life, but fate intervenes in the form of an accident that shatters his knee. He is given shelter and a job by Mambo (Hakeem Kae-Kazim, UK) who houses refugee teenagers from all over Africa.

When Joshua meets Olivia (Simona Brown, UK), a talented young dancer of mixed race from a well-to-do family, it brings him into a world he has never known before. Her insights cast a shadow over Mambo’s agenda and cause Joshua to rise above all odds and find a way to a brighter future.

“Making this film has been a dream for me since I first returned to South Africa from the States five years ago,” says Gonera.

Coming back rebooted my directing career and ignited the deep love for my continent and a passion to tell our African stories, our way. It helped me discover my voice as a filmmaker.”

The film boasts a strong cast which includes Hakeem Kae-Kazim (Black Sails, Pirates of the Caribbean, X-Men, Hotel Rwanda), Charles Mnene (The Bill, Holby City, Doctors, Ahead of the Class), Simona Brown (Guilt and Roots, Him) and Brendon Daniels (League Of Glory, Madame and Eve, Five Fingers For Marseilles).

With music at its core, expect cameos from some of popular South African talent.

The production of the film has been made possible with the support of The National Lotteries Commission (NLC), The Department Of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Arco Venture Capital.

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