DURBAN WELCOMES THE 36TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
By: Sthandwa Gwala & Elizabeth Kunene
Award winning actors from around Africa gathered at the Elangeni Hotel this past week to kick-off the Durban International Film Festival (DIFF).
The festival started on the 16th of July at Supernova. The film Ayanda directed by Sara Blecher was viewed on the opening night.
A public discussion forum was held at the Elangeni Hotel and actors such as Terry Phetho, Desmond Dube, Xolile Shabalala and Kenneth Nkosi as well as the lead actor and actress in the film were present.
South African actor and writer Jafta mamabolo- who is featured in the opening film ‘Ayanda’ said that he was grateful to be a part of the DIFF and that he hopes people will be moved by Ayanda’s story.
“Someone has to stand up and tell our stories and I hope this film inspires people,” said Mamabolo.
This seminar was aimed at both professional and aspiring film makers and anyone with the love for film as a whole.
It also gave the public an opportunity to network with the guests which included producers, directors and actors. Various topics such as success in the film industry as well as the challenges actors and film makers in Africa face were discussed openly.
“Pedro the DIFF CEO came up with this idea of giving back to the community that has been supporting us since we started in this industry.
We are giving back to the people that have been watching us on TV,” said Xolile Shabalala.
Shabalala also said she will be using this initiative to visit schools, children’s home’s as well as various communities.
This year the DIFF featured 74 feature films, 40 documentaries as well as 74 short films which can be viewed in different venues around Durban, Musgrave, Suncoast Casino and Sneddon theater to mention a few.
The DIFF offers both global and local cinema, which includes award winners from around the world and a large number of films that will premiere at the festival.
They also have a variety of free public venues which the public can take advantage of.
The festival will be going on for 10 days and will officially end on the 26th of July.
For more information on the DIFF 2015 visit www.durbanfilmfest.co.za