‘Kite’ film crew get protective in Joburg

Andile Ndlovu

FILM crew working on Hollywood veteran Samuel L Jackson’s upcoming film, Kite, kicked up a fuss yesterday as they moved to block pictures being taken of him in downtown Johannesburg.

Despite the fact that the Django Unchained star was not in character, one unnamed woman working on the production threatened to send bodyguards if any pictures of Jackson were taken.

But in his customary cool guy demeanour, the 64-year-old seemed unfazed and walked right past the impending scuffle and back into a block of flats on Fox Street – he had briefly left the set – where filming has been taking place for the past two days.

The production was rocked by the death of original director David Ellis in January, just weeks before pre-production and principal photography was to begin.

But South African director Ralph Ziman now heads the film – a live action adaptation of Yasuomi Umetsu’s hit Japanese animated classic.

Jackson could be seen through a window of the building, hugging an unidentified woman during multiple takes.

Young US actress India Eisley, who stars as Ashley Juergens in the TV series The Secret Life of the American Teenager, is part of the principal cast, along with another teen, Australian actor Callan McAuliffe, who recently shot The Great Gatsby.

According to the premise, Kite tells the story of Sawa (Eisley), who lives in a failed state post-financial collapse, where the corrupt security force profits from the trafficking of young women.

And when her father, a policeman, is killed, she vows to track down the murderer with the help of her father’s ex-partner, Karl Aker (Jackson).

Sphiwe Mkhize, a tenant in the building, said he was offered R25000, for the use of his room for two days.

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