PE film producer thrilled at award

Thulani Gqirana

A PORT Elizabeth film producer says accepting the Best Feature Film award at the Africa International Film Festival (Afriff) in Nigeria for the movie Of Good Report was one of the greatest moments of his life so far.

Of Good Report, written by South African director Jahmil XT Qubeka and produced by Mike Auret and KwaDwesi resident Luzuko Dilima, walked away with the top award at the festival at the weekend.

The festival started on November 10 and ended on the 17th with the award ceremony.

Dilima, of New Brighton Pictures, said receiving the award showed that African filmmakers were proud of this South African product. “We are African champions. The festival included filmmakers from all over, including Kenya, Nigeria and Cairo.

“So for Of Good Report to be awarded this [prize] means bayaziqhenya ngathi [Africa is proud of us],” he said yesterday.

The 87-minute film, shot in Somerset East in May last year, tells the tale of a small-town high school teacher with a thing for young girls.

The trouble for Parker Sithole (Mothusi Magano) begins when he accepts an invitation to a tavern drinking session.

Here he meets Nolitha Ngubane (Petronella Tshuma). Captivated by her beauty, Parker feels like a man reborn. An affair ensues.

However, there is just one problem: Nolitha is one of Parker’s pupils and just 16 years old. Parker quickly spirals into a deep obsession that ultimately turns to tragedy.

Last month, the movie received the inaugural Best Feature Film award at the Screen Excellence Awards in Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal.

Dilima, 33, said the Nigerian award made him feel that every decision he had made so far had been right. He gave up a career in the banking industry to follow his passion.

He said when he came back this week, his mother, Lungisa, took him and his daughter Libhongo, 5, to lunch to celebrate.

Qubeka commented: “I prefer seeing it as a call to arms. Such recognition serves to fuel as well as affirm our intention and desire to help bring more global focus to African cinema.”

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