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.

21 May 2010

SOS News - Report back - SABC head of news, seminar on "Structuring&financing PBS in the digital age",Community TV Workshop 24-26 May, FES media site

Hello all

As usual there are many important issues. Firstly there seems to be some problems with the appointment of the head of news. To see Business Day article click here.

Secondly, a reminder about the DOC's community TV workshop happening next week from the 24th to the 26th. Please find details below.

Thirdly, I wanted to give you all some feedback on Wednesday's seminar at Wits. Thanks so much to all of those who came. It was a good discussion. Indra discussed some of the important big picture principles for PBS such as the need for public accountability. Jane looked at the importance of maintaining the SABC's dominance in the media landscape to protect the long term viability of public broadcasting. I will send you more details later today. Also, I will be circulating the mins early next week.

Finally, do have a look at the German funder, FES's new website - It is an excellent resource for African media docs.


Please receive an invitation to attend the Community Television Policy Workshop to be held as follows:

Date: 24-26 May 2010

Venue: Birchwood Hotel

Please note that the workshop programme will follow in due course. It is however anticipated that the key strategic issues to be discussed will include the following:
  • Community TV: international models and experiences
  • Community Radio and lessons for community TV in South Africa
  • Funding content: can community TV manage?
  • Regulating community TV: current and future scenarios
  • Various Community TV business models and legal implications
  • Public Service Broadcasting Bill and Community Broadcasting Charter
Also note that as part of the Workshop, the Department will be hosting a gala dinner on the evening of 26 May 2010 wherein delegates will be expected to dress in either traditional or smart casual wear.

If you are interested in attending the Workshop, it is critical to confirm your attendance, on or before Wednesday, 19 May 2010 by contacting Mr Linda Mazibuko on or Mr Robert Makatu on ,012 427 8000

Thanking you in advance and hoping to see you at the Workshop!

Kind regards

Ms Miyelani Khosa | Deputy Director: Broadcasting Policy

Story from the Mercury web site: SABC board's news revolt

Siyabonga Mkhwanazi, Political Bureau, The Mercury, Durban, 21 May 2010

The new SABC board has been plunged into controversy over the appointment of Phil Molefe as head of news, with its chairman Ben Ngubane accused of dancing to a different tune and acting unilaterally.

No sooner had Molefe's appointment been announced by Ngubane, the former Kwazulu-Natal premier and arts and culture minister, than his deputy, Felleng Sekha, denied it.

Sekha, the chairwoman of the board's news sub-committee, said the board had yet to take any decision.

An emergency meeting has been called.

Mysteriously, an interview recorded by Sekha for the SABC's PM Live radio programme - in which she distanced herself from the decision - was not broadcast as planned.

The appointment was announced in a 3pm SABC radio news bulletin yesterday, which was the first time some board members heard about it.

Questions are now being asked about why Ngubane decided to go it alone on the decision to appoint Molefe, who has been acting in the position since Snuki Zikalala's axing 13 months ago.

Board members contacted by The Mercury last night said Molefe's appointment had been a surprise. A panel delegated to consider candidates had yet to lay its recommendations before the board, they said.

Sekha said the board had not been presented with the name of any successful candidate.

"The board of the SABC has not appointed anyone for the position (of head of news). Whoever has been appointed to that position has not been appointed by the board," she said.


She also did not know why her radio interview had not been aired.

Fellow board member David Niddrie said: "I was surprised to learn of the appointment. There was a panel delegated to consider and recommend to the board (a suitable candidate). We have not received those recommendations."

Cedric Gina, another board member and the president of the National Union of Metalworkers of SA, said: "I have not been part of a board that took a decision to appoint Phil Molefe."

It is understood the board had agreed to review the appointment process for the critical post and discuss it at a meeting early next month.

A statement issued earlier quoted SABC group chief executive Solly Mokoetle as saying: "The board and I are happy that this matter has been brought to finality as promised, as this was a key vacant position that needed to be filled to stabilise the corporation.

"The appointment of Mr Molefe will go a long way in moving the news and current affairs division forward."

SABC spokesman Kaizer Kganyago said earlier yesterday that Molefe had been selected after a lengthy short-listing of candidates, but would not name others on the short-list. The board's decision to appoint Molefe was based on his experience of more than 25 years.

Last night neither Ngubane nor Mokoetle could be reached for comment and Kganyago was also no longer answering his cellphone.

The new board took over the reins in January from the interim board chaired by businesswoman Irene Charnley, that was appointed after months of instability and a rapidly deteriorating financial situation at the public broadcaster.

It re-advertised the head of news position to broaden the search for a suitable candidate - a process begun by Charnley's board in the second half of last year.

Click here to read article on the The Mercury Page.

Media release: location filming arrangements in Gauteng during the World Cup


20 May 2010

Business mostly as usual for Gauteng during the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup™

With the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ just around the corner many filmmakers are wondering whether filming will be affected during the World Cup period.

To answer this question the GFC has compiled useful information on filming requirements for the film and TV industry in Gauteng which will apply during the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. As the GFC receives further updates from the host cities, the Local Organising Committee and FIFA, such communiqu├ęs will be circulated to our production community.

The Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) has given assurances that it will be business as usual across the metropolitan area. The only areas which will be directly affected will be the official World Cup restriction and exclusion zones and certain locations and facilities (including transport facilities such as the Rea Vaya, Gautrain, Park and Ride facilities etc.).

Producers wishing to film during the World Cup period in non-restriction or exclusion zones can still approach the GFC for assistance in submitting applications for filming permits and the standard procedures and rates will apply. The GFC would like to recommend that producers and production companies avoid locations that are in close proximity to stadiums, fan parks, Public Viewing Areas (PVAs), official hotels, training facilities and major transport arterials in favour of those that are not impacted by the World Cup.

In the case of micro shoots it is recommended that you contact the GFC who will notify the relevant permitting authority.

Restriction and Exclusion Zones in Johannesburg
The following areas have been declared World Cup restriction and exclusion zones:

  • -Ellis Park Stadium, Doornfontein
  • Soccer City stadium and International Broadcasting Centre, NASREC
  • Innes Free Park (FIFA Fan Park), Sandton
  • Elka Stadium (FIFA Fan Park), Soweto
  • Mary Fitzgerald Square, Newtown
  • Park Station, Johannesburg CBD
  • Gautrain Station/ FIFA Accommodation venues, Sandton Central
  • No.3 Square (Football for Hope), Alexandra
  • Orlando Stadium, Soweto
On non-match days filming permits for restriction and exclusion zones may be applied for through the relevant South African Police Service (SAPS) station. On match days though special approvals will need to be secured through the LOC and the City of Johannesburg. Filming of actual matches requires FIFA accreditation.

The contacts for the relevant SAPS station in Johannesburg are as follows:

Station / SAPS Station / Phone / Fax

Ellis Park Stadium / Jeppe Police Station / 011 624 6000 / 011 624 6096

Soccer City Stadium / Booysens Police Station / 011 433 5200 / 011 433 5272

Elkah Stadium / Moroka Police Station / 011 527 0000 / 011 984 4447

Innes Free Park / Region E Office CoJ / 011 582 1400

Public Viewing Area / Joburg Central Police / 011 497 7000 / 011 497 7582
(PVA) Mary Station
Fitzgerald Square

Football for Hope / Alexandra Police Station / 011 321 7600 / 011 321 7628
Festival (FFHF)

Orlando Stadium / Orlando Police Station / 011 983 4800 / 011 935 2284

City Improvement Districts
In terms of all City Improvement Districts (CIDs) in Johannesburg, special arrangements have been reached that micro shoots (crew sizes of 10 and less crew members) do not require any permits as long as the shoot does not involve road closures or the parking of trucks etc. This is with the exception of restriction zones in Newtown and Sandton which may require special approvals. Where crew sizes exceed 10 people or road closures are needed you would need to secure prior permission and the standard tariffs will apply.

City Improvement Districts in Johannesburg are:

  • Sandton Central
  • Rosebank Management District
  • Illovo Boulevard Management District
  • Central Improvement District (inner city)
  • South Western Improvement District (inner city)
  • Retail Improvement District (inner city)
  • Braamfontein
  • Randburg
  • Wynberg
  • Benrose
  • Civic Legislature
  • Sloane Precinct (Bryanston)
  • Newtown
  • Constitutional Court (Braamfontein)
  • Main Street Mall, and
  • Gandhi Square.
For film shoots in any of the above locations contact the GFC for assistance.


The City of Tshwane has confirmed that business here will also be as usual across the Metro. Road closures and access restrictions in the area around Loftus Versfeld Stadium (Loftus) will be very much the same for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ as those put in place during the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009. There will be a lockdown of the area immediately around Loftus from a few weeks prior and of a larger area on match days only. Access to these areas will be restricted. During this time there will only be access restrictions on the roads immediately surrounding Loftus, i.e. Kirkness Street and parts of Jorissen Street, Lynnwood Road, Ayton Street and Bond Street.

The City is currently finalizing a list of other restriction zones which will be communicated to the industry.

Ekurhuleni and O.R. Tambo International Airport

In the case of the City of Ekurhuleni filming arrangements will be as usual. However, certain restrictions may apply in and around the O.R. Tambo International Airport, the Ekurhuleni Welcome Village, official hotels and training facilities, as well as all major routes to and from the O.R. Tambo International Airport.

Note that the Airports Company South Africa in conjunction with the Ekurhuleni Metro Police Department and the South African Police Force have scheduled, planned road closures at O.R. Tambo International Airport. As of Monday 10th 2010, the lower road way which is normally used for pick- ups (Arrivals), will be closed to the general public. Motorists who wish to drop off passengers will be directed to the upper roadway (Departures), those who are there to pick up arriving passengers are advised to make use of the parking bays. The airport has a 15 minute free parking grace period in all parking areas, which gives enough time to collect passengers and drive off.
The closures will be implemented on the following days throughout the month of May:

Mondays 06h00 – 09h00
Wednesdays 10h00 –14h00
Fridays 14h00- 20h00
Sundays 17h00- 20h00

This exercise will ultimately result in complete road closures in some areas for members of the public from June 1st until the end of the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site

Filming in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site (including Sterkfontein caves and Maropeng), requires that filming applications be forwarded to the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA), but only when a live broadcast is envisaged. The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site advisory personnel in this regard are Ms Reshma Lakha-Singh who can be contacted at 011 355 1402 or; and Mr. Hein Pienaar who can be contacted at 011 355 1596 or respectively.


Filming in Dinokeng requires one to seek guidance from Ms Reshma Lakha-Singh, who can be contacted at 011 355 1402 or

2010 FIFA World Cup™ matches

The filming of 2010 FIFA World Cup™ matches require prior accreditation and approval from FIFA. For more information please visit

For information about match days and venues visit

World Cup ICASA Media Rights

The GFC has been advised that live satellite transmissions require prior approval from ICASA. Note that fees apply.

For assistance please visit

Commercial Producers Association (CPA) advocates ‘common sense’

The CPA has advocated a “common sense approach” for commercial producers wanting to film during the World Cup. This means an acknowledgement that locations that are in close proximity to stadiums, fan parks and major transport arterials should be avoided in favour of those that are not impacted by the World Cup. These include private residential and corporate properties, suburbs, townships, rural and remote areas and City locations that are not in close proximity to World Cup venues and activities.

From an insurance perspective the industry’s leading insurers have confirmed that all the insurance usually taken out by agencies and production companies in the production process will be available for the duration of the World Cup. They too advocate that all parties use common sense when deciding on locations to ensure that filming does not impact on World Cup activities and vice-versa.

Says Bobby Amm, CEO of the CPA, “the CPA is satisfied that the World Cup will not hinder the production of commercials and we encourage any agency or client who has concerns to discuss these with the production company concerned or with the CPA. We sincerely hope that there will not be a drop off in production because agencies and clients have been misinformed. It’s business as usual albeit under rather unusual circumstances.”

GFC Contacts

For more information visit

For general location enquiries contact:
Seitiso Mogoshane
Locations Officer

Gauteng Film Commission

56 Main Street Johannesburg, 2108 South Africa
PO Box 61601 Marshalltown 2107,
Tel: +27 (0) 11 833 0409
Fax: +27 (0) 11 833 0282 / 0865055772
Cell: +27 (0) 83 608 4324



For media enquiries or additional media information, please contact
Jacques Stoltz of the Gauteng Film Commission on +27 (0)11 833 0409 or +27 (0)83 455 9688 or

SABC Media Statement - SABC Appoints GE-News and Current Affairs


Johannesburg, 20 May 2010 -In line with the stated objectives of the SABC Board, when it took office in January 2010, to fill key vacant positions, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) today announces the appointment of Mr. Phil Molefe as the corporation’s Group Executive: News and Current Affairs, for a period of five years effective from 1st June 2010.

Mr Molefe’s appointment as the successful candidate to head the SABC News and Current Affairs Division follows a lengthy process of selection and short listing that was commenced by the Interim Board in August 2009 but was not finalised when its short term ended in early January 2010.

In order to ensure further transparency the new SABC Board reopened the appointment process by re-advertising the vacancy for another two weeks at the end of March 2010. The name of Phil Molefe emerged as the successful candidate for the position from a short list that was conducted by a panel of Board members.

“The Board and I are happy that this matter has been brought to finality as promised, as this was a key vacant position that needed to be filled in order to stabilise the corporation. The appointment of Mr. Molefe will go a long way in moving the News and Current Affairs division forward.” said Mr. Solly Mokoetle, SABC GCEO.

The decision to appoint Mr. Molefe was based on his more than 25 years experience in news and current affairs broadcasting at an executive and senior editorial level. He was currently the GM: International Affairs and also Acting GE: News and Current Affairs since the post became vacant in 2009. Mr. Molefe has also previously served as Head: TV News and Current Affairs, Head: SABC Africa and Political Editor.


Media Enquiries

Kaizer Kganyago

SABC Spokesman

20 May 2010

Business as usual for GFC following merger announcment

Following the recent announcement by the Gauteng Provincial Government that the agencies of the Department of Economic Development will be restructured, the Gauteng Film Commission wishes to assure the film and TV industry that it will be business as usual for the GFC for the remainder of the current financial year.

The Department of Economic Development has confirmed that the process of reducing the existing agencies to the three proposed agencies, namely the Growth and Employment Agency, the Tourism Promotion Agency and the Industry Regulation Agency, will be completed by the end of this financial year (March 2011). The restructuring will entail the merger of existing agencies and the rationalisation of mandates and functions into the three new proposed agencies. During this period the industry and other stakeholders of the GFC will be consulted.

The review of the Gauteng Provincial Government and its agencies were undertaken with the objective of rationalising and improving service delivery in the Province. The Gauteng Provincial Government has given assurances that the implementation of the new structures will take place in a carefully managed environment ensuring that government leverages existing capacities and competencies and target a simplified operational model to address problems and weaknesses identified during the review process.


For more information, please contact:
Jacques Stoltz, Senior Marketing Manager: Gauteng Film Commission on +27 (0) 11 833 0409 or +27 (0) 83 455 9688 or

Story from the Mail & Guardian - "No one wants to air 2010 documentary"

Michael Cross is a DFA member.

by Phatisani Moyo, Johannesburg, South Africa - May 14 2010

A hard-hitting documentary, which alleges that South Africa has wasted resources preparing to host the World Cup, has been snubbed by the country's three main broadcasters.

M-Net has joined and the SABC in refusing to give airtime to the critical Fahrenheit 2010. It is directed by South African Craig Tanner, who is based in Australia, and co-produced and edited by Michael Cross, who lives in Durban. An email to Cross from's executive producer: current affairs, Debbie Meyer, reads: "I don't think it is suitable for a South African audience -- I am sure you made it for an international one."

SABC spokesperson Kaiser Kganyago said he was not aware of any such documentary having been submitted. Cross said that the film was handed to Mzi Mgebisa, former managing editor for SABC sport, on April 29 this year. Mgebisa is no longer with the corporation.

Kganyago said the country's biggest national broadcaster was the official partner of the Fifa World Cup. "Our job is obviously to promote the World Cup and flighting anything that can be perceived as negative is not in our interest."

Shoneez Kay of M-Net wrote to Cross rejecting the documentary in January: "Thank you for submitting Fahrenheit 2010 to me for consideration but I am afraid this will not work for M-Net."

Although the film has not been broadcast on any of the national channels, it has been aired in Spain, Brazil, Portugal, Estonia and at the Cambridge International film festival and is set to be shown on June 15 in the United States after being snapped up by Warner Brothers, according to Tanner and Cross.

Tanner told the Mail & Guardian he spent three weeks in the country in late 2008 interviewing a spectrum of South Africans on the merits of hosting the World Cup. The film features local organising committee chief executive Danny Jordaan, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, the late anti-apartheid hero and renowned poet, professor Dennis Brutus, sociologist Ashwin Desai, vendors, cartoonist Zapiro and former Fifa communications director Hans Klaus.

Tanner said the documentary asked whether a developing country should have embarked on building multibillion-rand stadiums for the tournament: "R4-billion was spent on a new stadium in Cape Town, instead of using Newlands, or renovating the Athlone Stadium.

"The explanation is that this was to satisfy Fifa's requirement that a semifinal venue should accommodate 70 000 spectators. So R4-billion has been spent to host one game, a semi-final in Cape Town. That city now has more stadiums than it needs.

"Would it not have been in that city's interests to have limited itself to a quarterfinal at Newlands or Athlone and to have spent those billions on housing, health or education?" asks Tanner.

In Durban, he says, R3-billion was spent on a new stadium built next to the existing Absa Stadium. "These funds have been spent to stage 90 minutes of football -- one of the semifinals. After that match, it is planned to reconfigure the stadium from 70 000 to 54 000. Kings Park, with a capacity of 55 000, which is adequate for the city's needs, is to be demolished."

Fahrenheit 2010's most fierce criticism is reserved for the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit. "A 46 000-seater stadium has been built to host four matches over a period of 10 days in June 2010. There is no local soccer team with a fan base that would fill a tenth of the capacity of the new stadium and no plausible explanation has been provided as to how it could be viable after the World Cup."

Tanner says the matches should have been distributed across other stadiums, avoiding investment in a facility he feels would later stand empty.

He says they are not opposed to the World Cup coming to the country. "We are not against the World Cup coming to South Africa. The Confederations Cup was held in old stadiums and Fifa deemed it a success. It does not make sense to spend billions on new stadiums. Moreover, if you look around the benefits are in the hands of very few people."

But local organising committee communications manager Rich Mkhondo slammed Tanner and his film: "It is an exaggerated piece of garbage premised on the misconception that a single sports event can solve the socioeconomic challenges of a country. Nowhere in history has a tournament done that."

Mkhondo criticised the documentary for failing to acknowledge the benefits the Cup has brought -- the building of stadiums, airport facelifts, improved transport infrastructure and security and road upgrades. "Benefits of hosting such tournaments might not be immediately clear. Countries that host such events see the benefits long after it has come and gone."

Mkhondo was supported by the Tutu clip. "With all the negative things that are taking place in Africa, this is a superb moment for us. If we are going to have white elephants, so be it," said the Archbishop.

Jordaan said he had not seen the documentary and denied granting its makers an interview. "I don't know how I came to be in this film because they never talked to me. I have only heard from Mike Sutcliffe [Durban's municipal manager] that he and I are in this film."

But Cross emailed the M&G a consent form purportedly bearing the signature of Jordaan dated December 10 2008 acknowledging his being interviewed.

According to Cross, the motivation behind the documentary was to ask questions being overlooked. "South Africa is a developing nation with a lot of socioeconomic challenges such as housing, Aids, building of new schools, access to water and sanitation. People have put in a lot of money in setting up bed-and-breakfast accommodation but we are not going to get the numbers we wanted. Should we have been held to the same standards as Germany?" He feels the broadcast media coverage gives little attention to this downside.

Like Tanner, Cross accuses the broadcasters of stifling "healthy debate" around the World Cup. "I believe South African broadcasters have bought into the idea that everything has to be positive and are reluctant not to be seen to be utterly supportive." Cross says he understands the SABC's position as a partner to Fifa, but is puzzled by the and M-Net rejections.