ZIFF announces new festival director


As the Zanzibar International Film Festival prepares for its 20th annual edition, the board of directors officially announced the appointment of a new Festival Director. Fabrizoi Colombo will follow in the footsteps of Dr. Martin Mhando who stepped down in 2016 after nearly 10 years at the helm. The ZIFF Board of Directors has officially confirmed that Fabrizio Colombo will take over as ZIFF Festival Director from November 2016 and will be responsible for overseeing the festival as it enters into its third decade.

Fabrizio is no stranger to ZIFF or Zanzibar, having played a critical role in ZIFF for the past five years as Assistant Festival Director. Fabrizio’s passion for cinema, and particularly African cinema, has developed over many decade’s worth of development and media work across Europe and Africa.

Fabrizio has worked across various media platforms since the 1980’s with a particular focus on training and development within the sector. In addition to his work at ZIFF, Fabrizio was the Acting Director of the African Film Festival of Verona from 2006-2012, and also held the position of Programmer and Artistic Director at the KIKAKA African Film Festival in Florence Italy for a number of years. Fabrizio Colombo is director of the of office of the world association for media SIGNIS in Rome.

Fabrizio has an extensive knowledge of, and an unmatched passion for, African cinema and over the past few years at ZIFF he has become an invaluable resource in terms of his organizational skills, programming ability, as well as for his communication and management skills.

Former ZIFF Festival Director, Dr. Martin Mhando has this to say of his replacement, “ZIFF could not have found a better replacement for the position of Festival Director. Fabrizio’s knowledge of world cinema, his flare for the arts, his experience in festival management and in the ZIFF festival ethos, makes him the natural successor. ZIFF is in very capable and safe hands.’

Fabrizio has committed to putting film at the centre of next year’s festival that will celebrate the theme, Finding Joy, Kusikaa Furaha. With Fabrizio officially leading the way to 2017, supported by a full team of dedicated staff, major announcements will be coming soon in regards to film submissions and programming.

The ZIFF board of directors thank Dr. Martin Mhando for his many years of devoted and committed service, and welcome Fabrizio into his role going forward.

For more information visit the ZIFF website.

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Cera-Jane Catton is a writer and journalist with years of experience in community newspapers, blogging and freelance journalism. She has worked in a cache of capacities, often finding herself behind or in front of the cameras, intentionally and less so. She has been a stunt double in two Bollywood movies, has worked in various capacities on a number of natural history documentaries, and other international productions shot in South Africa. Cera is a former Screen Africa journalist.


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