Big SAFTA winners


The Last Lions, Material, 4Play: Sex Tips for Girls
and Sobukwe – A Great Soul were among the biggest winners at
the recent annual South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs) held on 15 and
16 March 2013 in Johannesburg.

The Last Lions was the big winner in the wildlife genre. Produced in
association with National Geographic, The Last Lions won four SAFTAs,
namely Best TV Wildlife Programme (Wildlife Films – Dereck and Beverly Joubert),
Best Director of a Wildlife Programme (Dereck Joubert), Best Editor of a Wildlife
Programme (Susan Scott and Candice Odgers) and Best Cinematographer of a Wildlife
Programme (Dereck Joubert).

“To bring a film to the big screen and show Botswana and its big cats in this light is a
privilege,’ says Dereck Joubert. “It gives us a bigger platform to discuss the plight of
big cats and to talk about the Big Cats Initiative, which we launched with National
Geographic to help stop the decline of big cats in the wild.’

Beverly Joubert adds: “Winning the SAFTAs for The Last Lions helps bring attention to
the grim fact that we have lost 95% of the lion population over a 50-year period.
Lions have gone extinct in 25 African countries already. We need to take action right
now and stop the decline.

“Winning is a great privilege. It also helps us with our conservation work by turning
the film into the ultimate ambassador for lions.’

“We no longer have the luxury of time when it comes to big cats,’ says Dereck
Joubert. “They are in such a downward spiral that if we hesitate now, we will be
responsible for extinctions across the globe. If there was ever a time to take action,
it is now.’

Material won five SAFTAs for Best Sound Designer of a Feature Film (Charlotte
Buys), Best Director of a Feature Film (Craig Freimond), Best Actor in a Feature Film
(Riaad Moosa as Cassim Kaif), Best Supporting Actor in a Feature Film (Vincent
Ebrahim as Ebrahim Kaif) and Best Feature Film (T.O.M. Pictures).

Producer Ronnie Apteker says: “We are very happy that the film has been so well
received and we are busy this year with our efforts to get the film released in India
and the UK. With a bit of luck and a lot of work we may just get this right.’

Documentary Feature

The award in this category went to Sobukwe – A Great Soul which is the
untold story of the late Robert Sobukwe, philosopher, activist, political prisoner and
apartheid’s most feared enemy. Sobukwe also won for Best Director of a Documentary
Feature (Mickey Dube), Best Factual Educational Entertainment Programme (Bornfree
Media) and Best Editor of a Documentary Feature (Andrew Wessels).

Producer and Cinematographer Mandla Dube says: “The win was a surprise as Robert
Sobukwe has always been overlooked politically and the film was not given a chance
by local exhibitors. It was wonderful to be nominated and recognised.’

Dube continues: “On the collaboration of the film, director Mickey Dube takes all the
credit for pulling together such an amazing team of talented artists. Mickey went out
there to get the best locations; it was as if he was possessed by Sobukwe’s spirit.
Thank you to Robert Sobukwe for allowing us to preserve his memory for future

TV Drama Series

4Play: Sex Tips for Girls took home seven awards including Best TV Drama
Series (Quizzical Pictures), Best Director on a TV Drama Series (Amanda Lane), Best
Supporting Actor in a TV Drama Series (Pallance Dladla as Jimmy), Best Actress in a
TV Drama Series (Tiffany Jones-Barbuzano as Danny), Best Writing Team of a TV
Drama Series, Best Costume Design of a TV Drama Series (Rochelle Selling) and Best
Makeup and Hair Stylist of a TV Drama Series (Minuche Snyman).

Harriet Gavshon, managing director of Quizzical Pictures, says: “We are particularly
happy about the SAFTA wins for 4Play: Sex Tips for Girls because it is produced,
written and directed by an all-women team. As a project, it has made huge strides in
bringing women directors into the mainstream of the industry and that is

Gavshon adds: “We are also very grateful to Johns Hopkins Education South Africa
and The United States Agency for International Development who supported the
project together with, and particularly our commissioning editor, Lynn Gaines.’

Born Free Media produced 90 Plein Street, also nominated in the TV Drama Series
category. Mothusi Magano won the SAFTA for Best Actor in a TV Drama Series for his
portrayal of Tshepo Sadiki, Nazli George took home Best Supporting Actress in a TV
Drama Series as Shireen and Tanja Hage and Sharron Hawkes won Best Editor of a TV
Drama Series.

Carolyn Carew, executive producer at Born Free Media, says: “Winning the SAFTAs is a
great achievement for all of the cast and crew who worked on 90 Plein Street. It feels
like our work has been recognised and all the dedication and the vision of director
Khalo Matabane, the actors, the cast, the crew and the writers all worked jointly to
create a great piece of political drama.’

Carew continues: “90 Plein Street deals with all the current issues around
nationalisation and the political world of parliament in a strong, dramatic way. The
series is a big challenge as it is placed in the world of parliament, which the general
public either read about or watch on television. Our series, creating a dramatic
narrative to what one sees daily, is the key to success. Khalo went for an innovative
approach by including real interviews with key political and social commentators
within 90 Plein Street.’

TV Soap

M-Net soap The Wild won four SAFTAs for Best Director of a TV Soap (The
Wild Directing Team), Best Editor of a TV Soap (The Wild Editing Team) and Best
DOP/Cinematographer of a TV Soap (Greg Heiman and Leon Kriel) and Best Art
Director of a TV Soap (Anneri Gericke).

The Wild’s executive producer, Bobby Heaney, says: “Shooting soap on
location was a first for South Africa and an incredible challenge both logistically and
artistically. We are very proud of the international quality of The Wild and the
SAFTA recognition serves as wonderful affirmation for our ground-breaking
achievements. M-Net is renowned for its ground-breaking work and I believe that the
technical and visual quality of The Wild will be hard to beat.’

Heaney concludes: “I salute the amazing cast and crew – an intense loyal family that
I was proud to lead.’

By Martie Bester

Screen Africa magazine – April 2013


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