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.

18 August 2011

Women and Film in Africa


Women and Film in Africa Conference: Overcoming Social Barriers

Conference organised by the Africa Media Centre, University of Westminster

Date: Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 November 2011

Venue: University of Westminster, Marylebone Campus, 35 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5LS

This is a 1st Call for Papers for a conference on the contemporary and historical role played by women in the film, television and video industries in Africa. From the Arab North Africa, West Africa, Central and East Africa, through to Southern Africa, women have emerged from the double oppression of patriarchy and colonialism to become the unsung heroines of the moving image as producers, directors, actresses, script writers, financiers, promoters, marketers and distributors of film, television and video in postcolonial Africa. Sadly, such immense contributions by women are underrepresented, both in industry debates and in academic research. There are now many cases in which African women in front of and behind the camera have overcome
social barriers and yet this is sidelined. This conference invites students, practitioners, academics and researchers to debate how women have contributed to film, television and video markets in Africa from pre-colonial, colonial to postcolonial periods. Existing industry and academic work should also discuss the ways female audiences in Africa have engaged with film, television and video texts. The conference will include a session with leading female filmmakers. Papers may include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following themes:

· The Influence of Feminism on African filmmakers

· Women in front and behind the camera in African film

· Women in the African feature film industry

· Women in technical roles in film, video and television in Africa

· Women documentary makers in Africa

· Gender and Representation of Women in African film

· Audiences for films by African women/Female audiences in Africa

· Case histories of leading African women filmmakers

· Women scriptwriters

· African women acting in video, film and television

· Censorship and the portrayal of African women in film and television

· The role of NGOs in commissioning women filmmakers and issue-based films

· How African governments have helped or hindered filmmaking by African women


The deadline for submission of abstracts is Friday 16 September, 2011.
Successful applicants will be notified by Friday 23 September, 2011.
Abstracts should be 200 words long. They must include the title of the conference, presenter's name, affiliation, email and postal address, together with the title of the paper. Please ensure when saving your abstract that your name is part of the file name. Please email your abstract
to Helen Cohen, Events Administrator at: (


This two day conference will take place on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 November, 2011. The fee for registration (which applies to all participants, including presenters) will be £135, with a concessionary rate of £55 for students, to cover all conference documentation, refreshments and
administration costs. Registration will open in September 2011.

16 August 2011

Women of the Sun Film Festival

Women Of the Sun (WoS) Film Festival
2–9 Sep 2011
Women of the Sun, in conjunction with the Goethe Institute, the Gauteng Film Commission (GFC) and the Department of Arts and Culture (DAC), are putting African women filmmakers on the map with the launch of a seven day film festival to celebrate African Women Filmmakers, in Johannesburg (2nd – 9th September). The Women Of the Sun Film Festival (WoS Film Festival) will be the First African Women Film Festival to take place in South Africa, featuring 25 films by 23 talented women filmmakers from 15 African Countries with 15 of the filmmakers present at the screenings.
Festival venue & dates
The festival is taking place 2nd - 9th September at The Bioscope Cinema, 286 Fox Street, Johannesburg (For Directions) (Opening night on 2nd September per invite only)
Booking information
Tickets can be purchased at the door
Ticket Price: R24
Festival Pass to watch all festival screenings is available at a discount price of R 250
The Women of the Sun Film Festival is running alongside the African Women Filmmakers' Forum the 2nd - 3rd September. Hosted by the Goethe Institut, the forum gathers a delegation of 25 women filmmakers of all levels of experience from sub-Saharan Africa, the USA and Germany to network with and gain inspiration from colleagues.
The Forum is a platform for Africa women filmmakers to assess the situation and develop strategies to strengthen their presence in the industry. It’s all about creating inspiration and supporting women in the industry to make more films, and once films are made, getting work widely distributed to audiences. Invited participants include world-renowned women filmmakers and festival programmers, distributors and local and international directors, producers and academics.
On the 4th September the forum will be open for the public under the name To Screen and To Be Seen - Female Perspectives on Filmmaking in Africa.
Time: 4th September 10am - 1pm
Venue: Goethe-Institut, 119 Jan Smuts Avenue, Johannesburg
Postal Address:
P.O. BOX 2608
Tel/fax: +27 11 487 3036
Cell: +27 72 143 1825

Filmmaking Ethical Code of Conduct

Following the recent furore over the BBC and Travel Channel’s ‘staged’ tribal TV series, Survival International has released a code of practice for filmmakers working with tribal peoples (pdf, 983 KB). The guidelines aim to prevent further misrepresentations and potentially damaging portrayals of tribes.

The code emphasises filmmakers’ responsibility not to let a ‘good story lead viewers to an unfair or unrepresentative opinion of (a) tribe.’ It also stresses the crucial role film plays in ‘how well or badly tribal peoples are treated’.

Survival has drafted the code of practice following a string of accusations by two eminent experts about a TV series on the Matsigenka tribe of the Amazon. It depicted the Matsigenka as savage and cruel, and was described by Dr. Glenn Shepard and Ron Snell as ‘staged, false, fabricated and distorted’.

Mark & Olly: Living with the Machigenga’ was shown on the Travel Channel in the US, and on the BBC last year. Presented by Mark Anstice and Olly Steeds, it purported to show the ‘reality’ of life among the Matsigenka.

Stephen Corry, Director of Survival, called it ‘a depressing example of the way tribal people are routinely portrayed on TV. One stereotype followed another…TV is now getting away with portrayals which wouldn’t be out of place in the Victorian era’.

Survival’s ‘Ethical practice when filming tribal peoples’ addresses the moral accountability required to produce a film, which has the potential to be the ‘only way viewers can learn anything about the tribe in question’. As well as alerting filmmakers to the pitfalls and consequences of irresponsible production, the code also provides a checklist of standards that filmmakers can follow.

To read further, visit the web site.

The District Six Museum Invites you to their AGM

Please click the image to view the details.

15 August 2011

Captor and Captive at The Bioscope in Johannesburg

Johan van der Mescht, a South African Army conscript was stationed on the border of Namibia when he was captured in 1978. He was held as a Prisoner of War in Sao Paulo Prison, Angola for four and a half years before being exchanged for a Russian spy, Aleksei Koslov, at Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin in 1982. Danger Ashipala was a young idealist when he joined the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO) military wing, to help liberate his country from colonial oppression. He was responsible for Van der Mescht’s capture. The film chronicles the first meeting between Van der Mescht and Ashipala in 2009, and explores their respective experiences. CAPTOR AND CAPTIVE is both the story of a man whose capture has taken him to hell and back and of his captor who kept him alive during the attack. Ultimately it is a story of forgiveness and redemption.
When Van der Mescht and his family returned to Namibia in December 2009 for the meeting with his captor and the filming thereof, he received a hero’s welcome. Ironically in his own country he is still regarded as a traitor who walked over to join the enemy. At its centre the story contains the universal themes of war, love, pain, betrayal and forgiveness and will appeal to a wide audience from age group 15 years to adults of all ages. The film bears testament to the reconciliation between veteran soldier enemies.

14 August 2011

NFVF Slate Funding

Call for proposals for NFVF Slate funding

Closing date: 30 August 2011
The National Film and Video Foundation invites all eligible production companies to respond to the Call for Proposals for Slate Funding as detailed below:

Over the past five years the NFVF has awarded slate funds to two production companies with specific developmental and sustainability objectives. The initiative was developed out of best practice internationally and was rooted in the notion that when a small company is granted operating capital towards development and cornerstone financing for production over a predetermined period, a great deal of uncertainty is removed from running the business.

The first slate was very clearly targeted at providing black directors a shot at their first feature in a supportive environment and it also involved the training of black heads of department. The second slate, which is in the second year of running, was awarded on the basis of a unique low budget commercial concept by the production company and will be tested when the first of the 4 films comes to the big screen later this year. The institution has drawn lessons from the first two slates and now wishes to extend the programme of slate funding to three eligible production companies.

Slate Funding Objectives
The aim of the National Film and Video Foundation in putting out this call are broadly the following:

* Cultivating sustainable and viable production companies.
* Assisting production companies to identify and produce films that demonstrate audience awareness in the South African and international market.
* Finding original ways of reaching audiences nationwide.
* Encouraging increased opportunities for emerging writers and directors to have their work developed by reputable production companies.
* Increasing the marketing and export of South African film products to the global market.
* Promoting greater cooperation between production companies and distribution companies.

To view the full details, please visit the NFVF's web site.

3D Workshop at Visual Impact Cape Town

Please click the image to view the details.

Street Talk Documentary Academy

Shoot your own 15 minute documentary film in the vibrant communities in and around Cape Town and have it broadcast on Cape Town TV

* Follow a four-week journey into the world of documentary filmmaking working alongside two industry professionals – Jo Menell, Richard Mills and their team
* Our studio is based in Long Street, Cape Town’s Soho. Film in townships in and around Cape Town; Langa, Gugulethu, Khayelitsha, Mfaleni…
* You will make a 15-minute documentary film which will be broadcast on Cape Town TV (CTV) 1.5 million viewers and on our YouTube channel. Add your film to your show reel.
* Research, development of concept, pre-production, shoot, sound, edit and broadcast.
* Small group, focused, community-orientated, professional production environment.
* The documentaries will cover a full-range of life in the communities from music, drama, art and dance to HIV education, community activism and sport. CTV embraces the broadest of views and the minimum of censorship.

Visit the web site.

NFVF Consults on the Definition of a South African Film

Please click the image to view the details.
Download the NFVF Assessment Criteria doc here.
Download the IPO's submitted doc here.

Tribute to Women in the Arts

Please click the image to view the details.
Original article found here.

Progress Screens at The Labia

We are delighted to be showing our film Progress with Labia Theatre from the 19th of August onwards.

Progress will be screening daily at 6.15pm at Labia Theatre, 68 Orange St, Cape Town.

Progress is a groundbreaking documentary about a small-town team who caused one of the biggest upsets in South African rugby history.

Creative team of Simon Taylor, Tom Glenn, Duane Heath, Bruce Boyd and Mark Shehab.

For more information, please visit:

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