Every year, AFRIFF (Africa International Film Festival) compiles a selection of some of the most compelling new films from around the world for the viewing pleasure of its audiences.
The 9th Edition of the Festival opened on Sunday the 10th of November, 2019, with Waad Al Kateab and Edward Watt’s multiple award winning film – FOR SAMA, a rare and shattering firsthand account of the war in Aleppo from a strictly female perspective.
Here are a few exclusive pictures of film enthusiasts and screen aficionados that converged on the Opening Night at the Filmhouse Cinemas, Landmark Retail Village, Victoria Island.
Screening continues all week until the Closing of the festival on Sunday the 16th of November, 2019, with Akin Omotoso’s THE GHOST AND THE HOUSE OF TRUTH – a riveting film on crime, convicts and forgiveness.
Winners of the IBBY SA Award Announced.
National bookseller Exclusive Books has announced the winners of its bi-annual IBBY SA Award, a competition aimed at recognising the best South African children’s book writers and illustrators, and, for the first time, best translator.
The Exclusive Books IBBY SA Award is endorsed by the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), a non-profit organisation which represents an international network of people from all over the world who are committed to bringing books and children together.
To be considered for the award, the writer, illustrator and translator must be South Africans and the book must be an original work written in any of the official South African languages. The book must also have been published in SA. The winners each receive R10,000 cash.
Best Story Lebohang Masango’s title, Mpumi’s Magic Beads, took the award for Best Writer.
Mpumi’s Magic Beads is a delightful story about friendship, self-esteem, discovery and beautiful hair in the big city of Joburg. It follows the sudden adventures of Mpumi, Asante and Tshiamo as they see the world around them from new heights and realise all of the fun waiting to be discovered outside of their classroom. This story is a great read for the whole family, especially children aged between five and 10.
Best Illustrations The stunning picture book, South African Animal Portraits A-Z, saw Nicolaas Maritz win the prize for Best Illustrations.
The vivid and charming illustrations allow you to meet the mammals, reptiles, insects and birds which populate the veld, desert, forests and ponds of SA. From the ant-eating aardvark to the zebra spitting cobra, there is a new friend on every page.
Best Translation The superb translation of Maryanne and Shayle Bester’s Elders at the Door, by Xolisa Guzula, won her the prize for Best Translation.
Iinkonde eMnyango, the isiXhosa translation, is a fable which is told across the continent and belongs to all of Africa and its people. Although the setting and characters are quintessentially African, from the rhythms of their speech to the patterns on their clothes, the message is universal.
Says Colleen Whitfield, Exclusive Books’ children’s book manager: “Exclusive Books believes in nurturing a love of reading in children from an early age. The primary objective of the Exclusive Books IBBY SA Awards is to recognise talent, to encourage more South African authors and publishers to make story books available for children and to develop this genre of literature in South Africa.”
Burna Boy Pledges Proceeds from Upcoming Show to Xenophobic Violence Victims; AKA Reacts.
Burna Boy will return to South Africa for the first time following the recent spate of xenophobic violence against Nigerians and other foreign African nationals.
In the height of the violence in September, Burna Boy vowed to never return to the country. He wasn’t alone, as major Nigerian artists also cancelled appearances in the country, calling on the South African government to take adequate measures to protect foreign nationals.
“I have not set foot in SA since 2017. And I will NOT EVER go to South Africa again for any reason until the SOUTH AFRICAN government wakes the f**k up and really performs A miracle because I don’t know how they can even possibly fix this,” he posted on Twitter.
Now, Burna Boy has announced an anti-xenophobia concert focused on bringing people together, billed “Africa Unite.”
Nigerian-American artist Jidenna as well as South African artists Kwesta and and Busiswa are also slated to perform at the concert, slated for November 23.
According to the Buena Boy, a portion of the concert’s proceeds will go directly to victims of the attacks.
“The first of many! Part of the proceeds will be donated to the victims of Xenophobic attacks by me,” Burna announced on Twitter over the weekend. “I really hope we can all keep contributing in our own way to make the world a better and safer place for each other. # AfricansUnite, it’s bigger than all of us.”
After the announcement was made, we all waited with bated breathe at the response we knew would be forthcoming from controversial South African rapper, AKA.
We didn’t have to wait too long.
AKA called the artist out for what he termed “hypocrisy” given his initial comments.
While, the news of Burna’s upcoming show has been met with mostly positive responses from both Nigerians and South Africans online, AKA still appears to be taking jabs at the artist.
He responded to the news via Twitter, implying that South Africans were the real victims of the violence and that proceeds would need to go to them “for the most part” as a result.
Burna Boy, who recently earned the Best African Act at the MTV EMAs and sold out London’s Wembley Arena, is also set to perform at Afropunk in Johannesburg this December.