“Durban Poison,” written and directed by Andrew Worsdale, was awarded the best South African feature film prize at the 34th Durban International Film Festival. Worsdale’s road-movie thriller is inspired by a Bonnie & Clyde-type couple who went on a booze- and drug-fueled killing spree in the 1980s. The film, in the photo above, premiered at the festival.
On Saturday at the kudos ceremony, the festival inaugurated its first award for artistic bravery, presenting it to Jahmil Xt Qubeka for his film “Of Good Report.” Thus the fest saluted two filmmakers who’d been banned, decades apart. In 1987, under the apartheid regime in South Africa, the festival premiered Worsdale’s directorial debut, the cult feature “Shot Down.” The ironically titled film was banned in South Africa almost immediately after its release in the territory.
More than 25 years later, Qubeka’s film had been slated as the opening night event on July 18, but was pulled because
the FIlm & Publications Board refused to classify it.
Following intense industry debate and an appeal, the FPB reversed its decision and gave the film an R-rating, mean it can be seen by audiences aged 16 and over. Peter Machen, the ever-tenacious head of the festival, managed to squeeze in a screening of the film on Sunday, the last day of the festival.
“Of Good Report” concerns a high school teacher who becomes obsessed with a 16-year-old student. The board had stopped its original screening less than a half-hour into the film.
In a surprise announcement Thursday, J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot revealed it has lured away Sony Pictures executive Hannah Minghella to lead its film division. Minghella will report to Abrams and Bad Robot co-CEO Katie McGrath. She will oversee both development and production. TriStar executive vice president Nicole Brown will take up the mantle in the [...]
Paul Dano is in talks to join Robert Pattinson in Matt Reeves and Warner Bros. “The Batman,” sources tell Variety. Though the studio would not confirm the role, insiders believe that Dano would be playing the classic comic book villain The Riddler. Dano’s casting comes on the heels of Jonah Hill turning down an offer [...]
Vivendi saw its third quarter revenues increase by 16.7% to €3.97 billion ($4.4 billion) compared with the third quarter of 2018, once again boosted by the growth of Universal Music Group, while Canal Plus Group remained stable. For the first nine months of 2019, Vivendi’s revenues reached €11.3 billion ($12.5 billion), an increase of 14.6% [...]
Leading international sales agency-production-distribution company, FiGa Films, has snagged all worldwide rights to “This is Cristina” (“Ella es Cristina”), the directorial debut of Chilean scribe Gonzalo Maza, who has co-written four of Sebastian Lelio’s films, including his Oscar-winning “A Fantastic Woman” and Berlin Festival winner “Gloria.” “It’s a pleasure to collaborate with Gonzalo, whose writing [...]
Early in principal photography on “The Lighthouse,” writer-director Robert Eggers asked cinematographer Jarin Blaschke, who was shooting on black-and-white film stock, if he thought they could capture the look they were going for digitally. Blaschke answered no: Digital wouldn’t let them achieve the texture they had in mind — “what we photography nerds would call [...]
Panama’s internationally best-known helmer, Abner Benaim (“Ruben Blades Is Not My Name”) has just completed the shoot for his second fiction feature film, “Plaza Catedral,” starring Mexico’s Ilse Salas (“The Good Girls”), and Manolo Cardona (“Narcos”). Salas plays a 42-year old grief-stricken woman, Alicia, who has severed her ties with married life and society. Her [...]
Mamoudou Athie has joined the cast of the third installment in Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s “Jurassic World” saga. He joins Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, who will reprise their roles from the previous films, as well as Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum, who starred in the original mega-hit “Jurassic Park.” Colin [...]