SCREEN AFRICA EXCLUSIVE: The Best Overall Public Service Announcements (PSAs) in the Newcomer and Professional categories of the M-Net Television Awards for Good (TAG) competition, as judged by an independent panel of industry professionals, are My Son The Flyer and Exchange Life respectively.
Winners in all categories were announced at a gala event held on 4 December at the Kyalami Theatre on The Track in Johannesburg.
M-Net TAG (formerly known as the MultiChoice Vuka! Awards) falls under pay-TV broadcaster M-Net’s CSI banner, “M-Net Cares’. PSAs entered into the competition are produced for worthy causes and charities and the 30 shortlisted PSAs will be broadcast on the M-Net channel and across other channels on the DStv platform.
Idols SA 2012 runner-up Melissa and the Soweto Gospel Choir performed at the event. Popular TV personality and music artist Unathi was MC for the evening.
Said Unathi: “I love the M-Net TAG competition because it reminds me of my humanity and of the fragility of the planet. I believe that when you shine your light you unconsciously empower others to shine. We’re celebrating that glow today – the light that all these wonderful PSAs will shine on their chosen charities.
“M-Net takes great pride in your work and ensures the PSAs are flighted free of charge. In addition M-Net Cares awards five bursaries to young filmmakers.’
Koo Govender, M-Net’s Corporate & Communications director, said she was honoured to be in the presence of so many talented filmmakers, many of who are students.
“M-Net believes TAG is an important social innovation because not only does it recognise and reward filmmakers, it acts as a catalyst to highlight numerous worthy causes.
“This year we experienced a slight decline in professional entries which we attribute to the recession and the tough economic climate which is also affecting NGOs. There is a big need for new and fresh outlooks in advertising. This year’s PSAs have really been of a high quality and because the PSAs are broadcast on our channels it means that the charities are also big winners.
“TAG is helping to build a future community of creative voices from diverse backgrounds. We are proud of our previous winners and follow their progress in the industry. Last year the TAG 10 winners went to the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and were tasked with making a PSA for the Hope Foundation which treats depression.’
Govender noted that there were 103 entries in the Newcomer category and that 650 newcomers had participated in the TAG Workshops that were held in Johannesburg, Durban, Port Elizabeth and Cape Town this year.
Judges for the 2012 competition included Peter Carr, Alun Richards, Adam Thal, Tsepeng Naheng, Palisa Xorile and Thabang Moleya.
Said Moleya: “Six years ago I was a newcomer director in this competition and there after got the chance to direct a primetime TV show produced by Mfundi Vundla. Talent is very important in this industry but you need to committed and you need people to give you a chance.
“I love doing the TAG Workshops because I meet want-to-be filmmakers and I’m a want-to-be filmmaker. This year I was a judge in the competition and I was judging alongside industry professionals who have won Loerie Awards and a host of international awards.’
According to Moleya, the TAG judges loved PSAs that combined humour with a simple idea. “However, among the entries were too many PSAs with bad ideas. I would advise you to spend lots of time in crafting your PSA and in post-production. And, don’t bite off more than you can chew – keep it simple.
“The judges were encouraged by the wide variety of charities represented in the entries. But I have to ask why there were no PSAs in any language other than English. We have 11 official languages in this country,’ concluded Moleya.
The M-Net TAG competition is facilitated by production company The Bomb Shelter.
Here is the list of the 2012 M-Net TAG winners:
Newcomer Best Humour Category – Eye Test (Will Lisa Napier, Gregory Wylde, Alicia Young, Thabang Manyelo and Audrey Lisik)
Newcomer Best Animation – Indigo (Johan Taljaard)
Newcomer Best Sound design – My Son The Flyer (Tapiwa Musvosvi)
Newcomer Best Editor – My Son The Flyer (Donald Leitch)
Newcomer Best Script – Eye Test (Thabang Manyelo)
Professional Best Script – Anti-Cruelty (Marjolein Rossouw and Peter Khoury)
Newcomer Best Concept – Blair Witch Barbie (Alice Toich and Jonah Lewis)
Special Mention for Concept – Drive Blind (Mamta Ramjee)
Professional Best Concept – Exchange Life (Stephen Geldenhuys, Ivan Greyling and Gia Pra-Lewis)
Newcomer Best Cinematographer – My Son The Flyer (Fabian Vettiger)
Newcomer Best Director – My Son the Flyer (Robin Adams)
Newcomer Best Overall – My Son The Flyer (Maggie Leitch, Robin Adams, Tapiwa Musvosvi, and Donald Leitch)
Professional Best Overall – Exchange Life (Stephen Geldenhuys, Ivan Greyling and Gia Pra-Lewis)
The M-Net Cares Rising Star award – Missing Children (Duduzile Mkhize)
Report by Joanna Sterkowicz