The DFA was established in 2007 to promote and protect the interests of doc filmmakers in South Africa. To contact the DFA, please use the contact form: here . The DFA website is at: Membership applications can be made through the website here.

06 July 2009

KEISKAMMA – STORY OF LOVE wins Ousmane Sembene Films for Development Award at the 12th Zanzibar International Film Festival

Directed by Miki Redelinghuys and produced by Lauren Groenewald of Plexus Films, KEISKAMMA – A STORY OF LOVE tells the remarkable story of a village that won’t give up in the face of adversity. In verite tradition, the film interweaves the stories of a formidable Aids activist, Eunice Mangwane with and her comrade in arms, Carol Baker. While the artist-doctor, Carol, rushes on bumpy Eastern Cape roads, between Hospice, home visits and creating the altarpiece, Eunice is confronted with news of her daughter and grandson’s HIV positive status. While Eunice tries to save her family, Carol meets Nkululeko – a lonely, bright eyed 13-year old boy who has lost his family through HIV/AIDS. What follows is a story about how love can change the course of someone’s life.
Keiskamma - a story of love has screened at various festivals in South Africa and internationally, including RIDM in Montreal, IDFA in Amsterdam and Thessaloniki in Greece.

05 July 2009

DFA Members URGENT Call for expression of interest re documentary on nuclear power generation

Dear DFA Member, we were advised on Friday by Screen Africa (thanks Anglea) that The Nuclear Industry association of South Africa is calling for Documentary Companies to produce two documentaries on nuclear power generation they wish to commission. Mr Walmsley would like to make the selection of who gets invited to the commission briefings on 9 July, so please ensure you sub,it as below by the 7th of July... that's TWO days from now. Good luck!

Call for expression of interest re documentary on nuclear power generation

"The Nuclear Industry Association of South Africa (NIASA) wishes to commission a two-part documentary on nuclear power generation. The production will be in two parts to fit 30 minute TV slots. The first part will sketch the world and local energy scene and will examine all available technologies for the large-scale energy generation. It will conclude that, in the near future, the growing demand can only reliably be met by coal and nuclear-fuelled power stations. And, moreover, that coal has severe environmental drawbacks. The second part will examine the real and perceived negatives associated with nuclear power and explain how they are handled.

Production organisations which express interest and are pre-selected will be invited to briefings in Centurion on 16 July and in Century City, Cape Town on 17 July at which the proposed content of the documentaries will be explained in some detail. As currently envisaged, a total of fifteen speakers from Government and industry will be interviewed by a professional 'reporter' assisting a professional 'presenter'. Interested organisations will be invited to tender on the basis of an enquiry document to be distributed at the briefings.”

Expressions of interest must include information on previous experience in the area of scientific documentary filmmaking.
To be considered for the briefings expressions of interest must be emailed to John Walmsley on by end of day Tuesday, 7 July 2009.

Call for Entries opened: Invitation from Docudays Ua Human Rights Documentary Days IFF in Ukraine

The DFA received the following festival's call for entries which may be of value to our members.

Submit your film to the 7th edition of DocuDays Ua

Dear Friends,
Dear Collegues,

We are the organizers of the Docudays Ua “Human Rights Documentary Days” International Film Festival.
Our 7th edition of the Festival will take place from March, 26 to April, 2 2010 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

The Festival has traditionally
Human Rights Awards
Main International Competition Awards,
Audience Awards
The main idea of the festival is to acquaint the Ukrainian audience with the Best Art -
Documentary, and Best Documentary about Human Rights.
We would be very glad to include your film on the selection to program of the festival.
Selection deadline: November, 30 2009
We would greatly appreciate it if you enter your documentary as early as possible.
Please find the Regulations here and the Entry form here.
In case of your consent I shall highly appreciate your filling the Entry form and sending the DVD
and documents to the following address: Olga Kostina, p.b. 10964, Kharkov, 61013,Ukraine
Please, send back-up copies of your documents to the our e-mail address: or
  • Entryform
  • Still from film
  • Photos of the director
  • Brief Synopsis
  • Brief note about director (filmography)
  • Full film credits
  • Dialogue list in English, Russian or Ukrainian.
To screening the film the DVD copy is enough.
Directors or producers of films selected for participation in the Festival are invited to participate
in the Festival personally.
The Festival organizers will cover their hotel accommodation, compensates travel expenses and subsistence expenses.
Every successful film shall be represented by only one person.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

Very Best Wishes,
Gennady Kofman,
Festival Director
+ 38 050 597 4927

The official festival web-site is:

TVIEC - Press Release 04 July 2009 - Report Back on meeting with Minister

Dear DFA Member,

For the history that lead to this meeting with the Minister, please read this article.

4 July 2009


Yesterday, 3 July 2009, the Hon Minister of Communications, General S. Nyanda met with the TVIEC to receive a briefing on the extent of the crisis facing producers with regards to the turmoil at the SABC.

The TVIEC outlined the continued failure of the SABC to pay producers and the impact of the SABC’s immediate halt on procuring new content. The TVIEC is of the opinion that the independent production sector is under threat and that steps need to be taken to protect the sector.

The Minister affirmed the importance of the independent television production sector, noted its resilience during the economic downturn and its role in job creation. He stated that the sector is seen as a core player in digital convergence which will see increasing demands for local content. He stated that it is in the interest of government to help the independent production industry grow and in the creation of sustainable employment.

The TVIEC pledged to support and co-operate with the interim SABC board to ensure that the public broadcaster is stabilised and the crisis resolved.

The TV industry is estimated, by the Department of Trade and Industry, to employ 30 000 permanent workers and at least as many in freelance positions – as well as support a host of supplier industries. These jobs range from the highly skilled positions of writers and directors to a range of semi-skilled and unskilled positions including drivers, electricians, builders, painters, caterers and security guards.

Each drama series produced employs approximately 60 to 120 people – who in turn support 400 to 800 dependents. In addition, our products have a great multiplier effect. Each drama supports a range of related and unrelated industries from studios and equipment suppliers to clothing shops, hairdressers and food suppliers.

It is for this reason that the TV industry is recognized as a critical growth area for the economy.

The Gauteng Film Office has stated that in 2007, the film and television industry contributed R2.5-billion to the province and created 8 000 jobs. (A 2005 Delloite survey estimated that the SA audio visual industry generates R5.5-billion, with a multiplier of 2.5. They predict ours is an industry that generates in excess of R12-billion worth of economic activity per year.)


This press release is written on behalf of the TVIEC (Television Industry Emergency Coalition) which consists of: IPO (Independent Producers Organization), SASFED (South African Screen Federation), TPA (The Producers Alliance), DFA (Documentary Filmmakers Association), WGSA (Writers Guild of South Africa) as well as the CWU (Creative Workers Union).

So who's who on the SABC interim board? - From: Business Day

The following release was published by Business Day and we thought it might interest DFA members working with the SABC.

So who's who on the SABC interim board?

The selections for the broadcaster's interim board cover range of expertise.

A good head for business issues 

IRENE CHARNLEY: A well respected businesswoman, Charnley has been proposed by the African National Congress (ANC) as chairwoman of the SABC. She will bring business acumen acquired during her term as executive vice-president of MTN and an executive director of industrial conglomerate Johnnic Holdings. Before entering business, she was a key negotiator for the National Union of Mineworkers. She is CEO and founder of Smile Communications, a low-cost telecommunications operator which plans to offer affordable services to low-income consumers across Africa and the Middle East. 

Joining politics and journalism 

PHILLIP MTIMKULU: A former journalist, Mtimkulu has a doctorate in political studies and has been proposed as deputy chairman by the ANC as it believes he can use his experience to guide the SABC on editorial policy and journalistic ethics. He worked for a number of leading newspapers between 1966 and 1986, during which time he spent three years under a house arrest and banning order. Since 1997 he has been a senior lecturer in political studies at the University of SA. His political studies have concentrated on SA and its transition, developments within the ANC and one-party domination. 

Knowledge of media, gender
LIBBY LLOYD: An independent consultant, Lloyd has a wide range of experience in media and gender issues, having been involved in broadcasting, regulation, public policy development and implementation. She established the Media Development and Diversity Agency to provide financial and other support to media and was its first CEO. She also conducted research for the SABC on the policies required to ensure the equitable treatment of all South African languages and developed a language policy for it. Lloyd has also served as a councillor on the Independent Broadcasting Authority and its successor, the Independent Communications Authority of SA.

A veteran of Parliament 

SUZANNE VOS: A former journalist and Inkatha Freedom Party Member of Parliament, Vos served on the parliamentary communications portfolio committee for 15 years, but did not return to Parliament after this year's general election. She participated in the drafting of broadcasting legislation and knows about the affairs of the public broadcaster, having interacted with board members and executive management over the many years in which they had to appear before the committee. Vos also represented Parliament in the Pan African Parliament. 

Procurement his speciality 

LESLIE SEDIBE: An advocate with a Master's degree in tax law and the head of legal affairs for the World Cup organising committee, Sedibe was chosen for his deep knowledge of procurement issues. He developed the legal policies and municipal supply chain management policies for the World Cup, as well as other policies on ticketing and seat allocation. He held senior positions at EMI Music from 1998-2007.

Compiled by Linda Ensor

Source: Business Day

For more: Selection of SABC board marred by squabbles… Even the selection of the interim board has, not surprisingly, provided its own round of disputes.