THE Zimbabwe International Film&Festival Trust (ZIFFT) has pencilled October 4-11 as the dates for this year’s Zimbabwe International Film Festival (ZIFF) to run under the theme “Universal African” as it emerges the film jamboree would be taken to Bulawayo and Masvingo provinces.
According to Nigel Munyati, the founder and trustee director of the organisers, the theme “Universal African” is the celebration of African cinema and filmmakers who have excelled on the world stage.
“It is a call to the African film fraternity to boldly claim its space by producing more world-class films that tell the story of Africa with an authoritative voice. The theme also gives ZIFF 2014 the opportunity to engage the multitude of African film stakeholders globally and to motivate them to convene in Zimbabwe,” Munyati said.
He said while ZIFF 2014 would screen a broad spectrum of international films (documentary, action, short films and animation), focus will be on “new generation” African filmmakers, particularly those that have represented the continent positively through film.
Several Zimbabweans or Zimbabwe-related personalities have excelled in this regard, including Thandie Newton, Danai Gurira, Lucian Wiina Msamati, Tongai Arnold Chirisa, Leroy Gopal, among others.
ZIFFT will take the festival to Bulawayo, Masvingo, Mutare, Norton, and Chitungwiza; and the high-density suburbs in Harare and Bulawayo. ZIFFT is committed to creating opportunities for aspiring filmmakers in marginalised areas.
Venue details will be announced in due course, Munyati said.
Other ZIFFT programmes will run during the festival which includes the Short Film Programme (SFP), to mentor five aspiring writers and directors in producing short films; the film forum (FF) that will offer filmmaking master classes and film industry workshops.
The FF will host the Mokolo Foundation — an online distribution platform for African content that is already active in West Africa and South Africa — with a view to create a Zimbabwean distribution platform that can partner with Mokolo.
As in 2013, ZIFFT will collaborate with Goethe Institute to host Mini Input that will bring a diverse range of films for screening during the Festival. This year ZIFFT will secure the full participation of ZBC and other prospective TV stations, to ensure that they appreciate the broad range of content they can bring to their television channels.
ZIFFT and Goethe Institute will once again bring filmmakers as part of ZIFFT’s short film programme.
Filmmakers will mentor selected local emerging filmmakers in scriptwriting, directing and editing.
The completed films will be shown at the festival, on culture night.
They will also conduct filmmaking workshops and be resource persons during the FF and outreach activities.