The Art of Unlearning as a means to Significant Job Creation in the Film Industry SA

Straight2! is breaking all the rules in the South African Film Industry by turning the conventional methods of Production and Distribution on its head. Thereby making the Film Industry accessible to a whole new generation of film makers, distributors and film related fields.

 

Straight2! and its partners have taken a holistic view of the industry as it stands at the moment and have created an eco-system through Media Trader that is the central hub to unlocking the intricate web that is the South African Film Industry.

 

The entire process from scripting to screening is fraught with financial pitfalls that leave the filmmakers, the creatives, the actors and finally the distributors at the bottom end of the financial food chain. There is little or no consistency and film production is often a passion project that is not expected to make a profit or even cover costs. People along the whole chain, work for very little or for free. Once the producers have spent their savings on their project, they have no money to make the next one, or if they do it takes years to build up a sufficient cash supply. The net effect of this is that whilst there is enormous talent and enthusiasm for filmmaking, there is not a sustainable industry to really foster and grow those talents.

 

Alan Farber and Chris Avant Smith, two seasoned filmmakers, decided that the status quo needs to change and that the passion for making films by dedicated individuals needs to be supported.

 

Straight2! Projects develop a positive social currency with the movies they make and within the communities they work in, through the development of uplifting entertainment. Entertainment that portrays the positives in our world as well as developing characters that are truly aspirational. Along with the content of the productions Straight2! utilises the film sets as paid training ground, giving aspirant filmmakers an opportunity to work under the guidance of seasoned professionals, who will impart their knowledge and give these trainees the necessary skills to be able to both enter the industry (with experience) and ultimately begin creating their own content. Part of the community support strategy that is employed is to use local service providers to provide support for non-core ancillary services such as; catering, transport, security etc.

 

 

Voices of Faith – The Good News Story of making a film Diepsloot

 

Voices of Faith was filmed over 11 days in Diepsloot in February and March 2017. The ethos of Straight2! productions Is to provide communities with the tools and expertise to create professional full-length feature films telling South African stories. A small group of professional actors and a large Diepsloot contingent made up the cast.

 

Some Stats:

Each traditional film department was headed by an industry professional who in turn were assisted by paid trainees from the Diepsloot Community.

The producers did not only use aspirant filmmakers but also auxilary services such as catering, transport, security and of course local actors and extras. By using the local community, a quarter of the budget was directly injected back into the Diepsloot community.

 

  • Four Diepsloot locations used
  • Production office rented for the duration the Fr Louis Blondell Centre in Diepsloot
  • Diepsloot sourced trainees: 17
  • Diepsloot sourced extra’s: 21
  • Choirs used: 4 (54 individuals)
  • Local service providers: Catering, security, crew and cast transport , gear transport

                                      

The Ultimate Good News:

 

Since filming wrapped 4 of our trainees have become industry professionals, working on their own or commercial film projects. Whilst the glamor jobs in the industry are often the most sought after, two of our trainees moved into the Art Departments on professional productions, another one has become a professional Cameraman/Director and the fourth has started working as grip on commercial sets.

 

Straight2! is in pre-production for their next township movie, HERO MASK in which they will use those trainees from Voices of Faith as well as additional new trainees that have seen the success of Voices of Faith and want to join this growth industry.

 

Straight2! is open to collaborations with sponsors, investors and filmmakers, that want to make a difference to people’s lives as well as aiding in the exponential growth of the film industry.

Synopsis for

Voice of Faith

By

Anthony Ehlers

 

The story ‘Voices of Faith’ is a family drama. A split is healed through song and faith.

 

Gloria (Boshadi Nkomo) s a South African phenomenon, a Gospel star with a reputation (deservedly so) of being a complete Diva!.

 

At the beginning of the story, Gloria loses her voice while doing a live recording of her TV show. She leaves the high light and the gossip of the tabloids and escapes back to the comfort and security of her sister who lives in Soweto. Her sister Eunice (Regina Dube) hasn’t seen Gloria in a long time and seems to put up with her sister’s presence as opposed to embracing it. It is obvious there is an underlying anger towards her younger sister. Eunice’s daughter, Thandi (Sani Dlamini), by contrast is very excited to have her aunt back in the fold.

 

Thandi is one of the star’s of the local youth gospel choir that finds its home in their local church.

 

The choir are in full swing, practicing for a major choral competition. Their coach without much warning leaves the choir in the lurch as she attends to some personal issues. The Pastor (David Matamela) decides to take a chance and he convinces Gloria, against her own fears, to take over while the choir mistress is on leave.

 

Gloria does agree, but not happily. They say through adversity comes triumph, and Gloria is the true example of this. Slowly through the backdrop of training the choir she comes to term with her past failures, and comes to grips with the familial guilt that have plagued her.

 

Gloria finds her faith again. She does this by helping the choir find their own voice, and by helping her sister (unwitting as it may be) find her voice to be able to vocalise the past hurts her sister put her through.

 

This story is about coming to terms with ones own demons, and finding the faith to be able to deal with them.

 

Cast:

GLORIA - Boshadi Nkomo

THANDI - Sane Dlamini

EUNICE - Reginah Dube

MPHO - Tumelo Nkwanca

LUNGILE - Siphokuhle Mdingi

CEBILE - Nomonde Matiwane

DAVID - Phillip Molepo

PASTOR PAUL - David Matamela

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