Africa Day

With the world set to celebrate our continent on Africa Day, Friday 25 May, the GFC is taking part in two film festivals that support of the event: the Intercontinental Africa and Diaspora Film Festival at the Global African Diaspora Summit in Sandton, and the annual Sanaa Africa cultural festival in Braamfontein.

Africa Day marks 25 May 1963, the day the formation of the Organisation of African Unity, the forerunner of today’s African Union (AU), paved the way for increased African cooperation in promoting peace and prosperity on the continent.

The AU, in collaboration with the South African government, is hosting the Global African Diaspora Summit on Africa Day at the Sandton Convention Centre. Before the actual summit, a number of side events have already been held, including the Intercontinental Africa and Diaspora Film Festival at Sandton City. The festival kicked off on Tuesday 22 May and ends today, when the GFC will be hosting a screening.

The Intercontinental Africa and Diaspora Film Festival showcases narrative films and documentaries that explore relations between Africans in the diaspora and their relationship with the motherland. Some stories depict those in the diaspora battling with rejection, and others the difficulties of adjusting when they return home.

Films to be screened at the festival include Cuba: An African Odyssey, Aliens or Broers, Le Sourier du Serpent (The Snake's Smile), Big Banana and Juju Factory.

The event is planned to be an ongoing forum bringing together film and TV media practitioners with the aim of dispelling negative portrayals of Africa.

The festival targets the general public, with free entrance. It also featured successful interactive workshops and peer discussions with filmmakers.

Sanaa Africa cultural festival

Also in celebration of Africa Day, the GFC is taking part in the annual Sanaa Africa cultural festival at Shine Studios in Braamfontein from today to Sunday 27 May. The festival is held every year to provide a platform for the creative people of our country and continent to tell their own story. The aim is to help unearth and globalise South Africa and Africa’s emerging talent.

The festival was officially launched on Wednesday 23 May with the Johannesburg premiere of Man on Ground, a film by Akin Omotoso. The GFC played a key role in the completion of the film by contributing to its post-production. Man on Ground has already been screened at a number of other festivals, winning Best Feature Film at the inaugural 2012 Jozi Film Festival and a Special Jury Award as well as Best Supporting Actor at the Africa Movie Academy Awards in Nigeria in April.

Watch the trailer for Man on Ground:

Friday 25 May – Africa Day – is the cultural festival’s film day, which will see film screenings, workshops and networking events. Filmmakers will be given a chance to meet the media and promote their work.

The GFC will screen a number of other films that have received its support. It will also help with distribution by staffing an exhibition stand where filmmakers can sell their DVDs.