03 July 2009
01 July 2009
The town we come from/live in shapes who we are. We occupy its space, it occupies us. In this short 3 minute documentary competition, filmmakers, aspirant filmmakers, artists and students were invited to make a short 3 minute documentary titled “My Town”.
8 films were selected to screen at Encounters from all the entries. The winning film will be announced at a special screening on 18 July @ 19:00, NU METRO, V&A Waterfront.
ALEX, My Township by Matome Senyolo
Affectionately known as Gommora or Dark City, Alexandra is known to many for its dilapidation. Despite this, Alex holds special memories for its inhabitants. This poetic narrative film is a love letter to Alex, a letter that bares all and forgives all, sees beauty where others see damnation. A walk down memory lane. An insight into what makes this a township within a township. A true confession from one of its sons.
Hoedspruit by Warrick Grier
Hoedspruit is a small town on the Blyde River, in Limpopo province. It is a town where wild animals and humans co-exist. The hippopotamus has been called the number one human killer. However, the interface of human and animal settlements in Hoedspruit has set the scene for a rare and unique bond to be formed between a wild hippo and a hunter. This documentary looks at the extraordinary relationship of Tonie Joubert and Jessica, the hippo.
I Used to Come Here When I Was Little by Panayota Athanasiou, Ruth Heyns and Russel Grant
In this nostaligic film the filmmakers explore, “their town”, Johannesburg, as a place filled with childhood memories. They revisit special places form their childhood to see whether or not memories have made them greater and more magical than they are.
Le Marché Oriental by James Webb
The Cape Town Oriental Plaza was an Apartheid-era shopping mall designed to control Indian trade. Artist, James Webb invited Sheikh Mogamat Moerat of District Six’s Zeenatul Islam Majid mosque to sing the Adhan (call to prayer) inside the empty remains of the building a few weeks prior to its demolition in 2008. Le Marché Oriental is a poetic documentation of this experience.
My Town by Caroline Hillary and Johann Vorster (Mzansi Media)
The filmmakers explore jail as a theme for “My Town”. With the rising crime figures, many young men are making a new home inside the jails, and in turn it is becoming “their town”. Filmed at the Maximum Security Division of the Leeuwkop prison, this film seeks to make a poignant comment on “home” in South African prisons.
My Townships by Ayanda Mncwabe
In this hard-hitting film, Mncwabe draws a link between crime and childhood neglect in South African townships. She wonders if parents are to blame for leaving their children at home while they make sure everything is in order at ‘madam’s quarters’? Or are they just trapped in a cycle of poverty as they, ironically, need to care for other children to feed their own.
Rubble/Iron by Garreth Bird
Performing the tasks of disposal services, recyclers, and garbage collectors, the clip-clopping cart horses are a familiar feature of the Cape Town landscape. The horse steels itself, leans into its load and heads off steadily down the road, carting away the rubble left by the formal economy. This film reflects on the quiet heroism of the cart-horses and their owners, who lead a life of long hard days with minimal reward.
Woodstock by Lesedi Mogoatlhe
Mogoatlhe has moved from a township in Johannesburg to find a place of belonging in Woodstock, Cape Town. The film is about living amongst people she doesn’t know or understand, yet feeling at home. Feeling a sense of familiarity with the constant noise, the colours, the art, the diversity of people, and the hardships that bring everything to a standstill. There’s peace and laughter, then violence and silence.
PRIZES SPONSORED BY:
Logos: visual impact group, syntech, dds, media film services, dfa
Special thanks to
Encounters documentary festival, Nu Metro cinema
30 June 2009
If you want to extend your work to making television mini documentaries and make some good money doing it:
We are in the continuing selection procedure to find African correspondents to cover themes (subjects) we offer them. The criteria we use are;
1. The storyline you send in on a theme (subject)
2. and we do want to see at least one example video that you have made before. Please enable us to see a short video you made either online or by post DHL or Fedex.
We have created a way for the video's to be sent via the YouSendIt upload service. With
YouSendIt you can send large files (max 2 GB) over the internet. Go to
http://dropbox.yousendit.com/metropolis and upload your videos. Maximum file size is 2GB
so you probably have to compress your video item before sending it.
Alternatively you can use the YouSendIt Express standalone application for PC or Mac
(http://www.yousendit.com/cms/standalone-app) and obtain an account from us (send an
email to T.vanden.Hoff@vpro.nl) to upload your files and use firstname.lastname@example.org as the
recipients address. This program has a feature which will prevent interruptions in file transfer and might save you some valuable time, especially on flaky connections.
Our fedexnumber is: Vpro metropolis 413623480
Our DHL account number is: 960958461
t.a.v. Alaye van Empel - Aderemi
1217 Gb Hilversum
These are all the suggested themes (subjects) for the comming episodes. The sooner we get a nice short storyline on the theme, the sooner you might get the contract to make the story. Please do consider the style we are looking for expressed in the attached documents.
There is still a lot of room for new proposals, no contracts have been handed out yet. Plenty opportunity for you to get a contract. Be sure not just to give a report of the current situation in your country but let me know how you would want to cover the subject.
Please send me your storylines on these new topics as soonest.
Hoping for good, original and strong storylines
Having a baby
Here we look for stories that demonstrate what it means to have a child in your country. How important is it in your country to have children, how far do parents go to get children, do people have preference for a boy or a girl?
How many children should one have and what is the role of the man and the woman?
Against the system
In every country, there are some who don't want to be a part of society. They take the (deliberate) step to isolate themselves physically or mentally from the masses, the mainstream ideology or political arena. Artists, animal activists, lone thinkers, anarchists... people who want to build their own world and have very strong opinions about the way society functions. Can you find us a surprising non-conformist in your country?
Fathers and Sons
An episode in which we focus on the relationship between fathers and sons.
We're looking for personal stories of sons who have followed their fathers'
footsteps. And about sons who have gone in an entirely different direction than their fathers (a butchers son who's become a vegetarian spokesman, or son who's very right wing with a leftist father, etcetera etcetera). What is expected of a son in your community? How normal is it that a son follows his fathers footsteps? Do you know an interesting father and son story?
Every country has them: the star journalists, crime reporters, and others, hunting for news. In this episode, we want to find out what it's like to be a journalist in your country. And through following the reporter find out about the bigger stories and issues in your country. See for instance this contribution from correspondent Stef in Nicaragua on Calulo, the radio reporter who's hunting for car crash victims:
Calulo is an example of a very disturbing form of journalism, and we would like to see what sort of journalists your country has and if you can think of a character that would be interesting to follow around in his/her job. The main
thing: it has to be an interesting character, and we have to go out to where the stories are with him/her. No newsrooms, but out on the job, hunting for news.
Justice will be done
In this episode we look for different ways of doing justice. Each country has its own law system that prescibes which punishment one deserves for a certain violation of the law. Who decides upon this, how does the law system work and who enforces the law? Please tell us your stories that demonstrate how people in your country think about justice and punishment. (An example:
The 31-year-old Iranian is demanding the ancient punishment of "an eye for an eye," and, in accordance with Islamic law, she wants to blind the man who blinded her.
ml) Or send us stories on different kinds of punishment.
Catholics go to Lourdes, Muslims go on the hadj to Mecca, and Elvis-fans travel to Memphis, Tennessee. See for instance this contribution from
In this episode, we want to visit all different kinds of 'holy' places, with the people that visit them. Can you think of an interesting pilgrim and pilgrimage?
Every city has its own worst quarters. Where crime is high, where most people don't want to live, where sometimes the police is afraid of going in at night. In the Netherlands a campaign was launched recently to clean up and improve the 40 worst neighborhoods. By building more expensive housing, by investing in the police force and subsidizing all kinds of small activities, such as a biking course for immigrants wives.
But of course, Hollands worst neighborhoods are paradise compared with some other parts of the world. We want to find out what life is like in the worst parts of your city. And how your city deals with difficult neighborhoods.
For instance, in Rio de Janeiro a wall was built right around one of the worst neighborhoods, so that the people there can't get out easily. In other slums, the army is sent in to 'solve' problems. How's this in your city and can you think of a personal angle to this story? How harsh or how soft is the approach towards these quarters and the people that live there?
The impact of tourism
In this episode, we want to find out what kind of tourism takes place in your country and how it affects the culture, environment, and social relations where tourism is big business. We'd like to receive proposals on different sides of this story:
- What's are some of the most unexpected / unknown forms of tourism in your country? (For instance, in Burkina Faso, every year Westerners travel there to fulfill their dream of shooting a lion)
- What's the dark side of tourism in your country? How does it affect the country? (and what kind of people would you propose to follow?)
- What's the upside of tourism in your country? Sometimes, tourism has a great effect on a country. We'd like to hear about that side too. (here too, please tell us what kind of people you'd want to follow)
Nowadays, development aid is a multibillion industry. Entire countries have become dependant on the money from other countries. We would like to hear about cases in your country, from either the giving side or the receiving end. Some stories that we are interested in at first sight (and please feed us with other options):
- How do people in Africa feel about Western volunteers?
- Do you know projects that are still active but have no effect at all? How?
- Do you know development projects that have a second intention, next to helping people? For instance spreading a faith? Or other ideas?
- If you live in a country that receives help, what kind of results has development aid had on your country?
Crookes and thieves (and how to fight them) From small time crooks to 'super gangstas', we're looking for stories about people who by stealing, cheating or dealing, break the law to make their money. What are their tricks, what's their view on life, who do they fear?
Also, if you have an interesting story to tell on how criminals are fought in your city let us know as we're considering to include both sides of the medal in this episode. Here's one example:
In this episode we want to discover what it's like to be a woman in various cultures around the globe. We look for stories that show the position of women in your society. Women who have found a clever way to take advantage of their position as 'underdogs'; examples of women dominating men; or women that break with the local conventions of what women are supposed to do or think. Of course, feel free to suggest any story that you think involves an unexpected 'feminine' touch. An example from Iran:
Stories on all kinds of issues connected to birth: how and where do women give birth, what are the rituals connected to this, what is the role of men?
And is the birth of a new human being something special or business as usual, or is it celebrated extensively?
Alaye van Empel - Aderemi
Tel: 0031 35 6712688 / mob 0031 6439072