Book Handover To The Nelson Mandela Childrens Hospital

As part of their drive to play a role in promoting literacy in the country and celebrate Youth Day, Times Media Films, Mango Airlines and Exclusive Books handed over 15 boxes full of books to the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital (NMCH) on Thursday, 15 June 2017.

The handover follows a book collection drive in conjunction with the release of the movie THE BFG: THE BIG FRIENDLY GIANT for the hospital’s opening.

From left to right: Caron Rypstra – Publicity Manager Independent Films; Ms Pinky Mashigo, COO of the NMCH Trust; Christiana Kossioris – Business Manager for Independent Studios Times Media Films

Selected Nu Metro and Ster Kinekor cinemas, Exclusive Books outlets and Mango check-in counters were used as deposit points for the public to donate new and well-read books.

The donations were aimed at collecting books for the children admitted to the hospital to read.

Next Entertainment, the distributors of the DVD have also come on board and have donated DVD’s of the movie for the kid’s enjoyment. In addition to that, 20 more DVD’s from Next that consist of various children’s titles were donated.

Ms Christiana Kossioris, business manager for Independent Studios at Times Media Films, said they are happy to have had an opportunity to impact the lives of children. “As a company we strive to give back and this was a great way to get the South African public involved and give them an opportunity to give back to a really worthy cause. Being in a position to donate books to children who are hospitalized and in need of some distraction was something we really wanted to do,” she said.

Ms Pinky Mashigo, COO of the NMCH Trust expressed her appreciation on the donation.

“As we look forward to welcoming our first patients at the hospital, we are grateful to Times Media Films, Mango, Exclusive Books and everyone around the country who came together to ensure that our patients’ stay here is that much more comfortable. We encourage everyone – young and old – to keep the culture of reading alive,” she said.

Exclusive Books’ CEO, Mr Benjamin Trisk, said they are proud to have partnered with NMCHT on this initiative. “This will ensure that those visiting the hospital’s oncology ward will have a range of material to read. The Hospital can count on our continued support in the years to come,” he said.

Pumla Luhabe from Mango also expressed their satisfaction in playing a part in the initiative and said that they would be very happy to take part in any future initiatives of this nature.



The Voice SA Teaser: Epic Performances This Week

Top talent take on epic songs in The Voice SA
Coach Bobby, Sketchy Bongo and Daniel Baron perform too!

The Voice SA talent is ready to end the upcoming long weekend on a crescendo. During this week’s live showstopper (Sunday 19 June) the remaining seven singers will take to the stage in the hopes that South Africa has saved them for another performance. While they wait in anticipation to discover whether they’ve garnered enough votes or not, audiences will also be entertained by a variety of magical acts.

Coach Bobby van Jaarsveld revealed today that he will be doing a brand new remix of his iconic song  “Spieëltjie” with none other than legendary music man Sketchy Bongo. Then, Daniel Baron, who hung out with the Top 7 talent for a special mentoring stint prior to releasing his own album this weekend, will also pop in for a unique performance.

After host Lungile Radu introduced the talent and viewers to the nail-biting “Dangerzone” last week, one can’t help but wonder which singers will be in this volatile position this week. Have last week’s performances moved rocker Samanatha Leonard (24) and easy-on-the-eye Luke Lovemore (23) to a safer place, and if so, who will have to say goodbye to their friends and fans at the end of the episode?

This is what the Top 7 will be performing this week:

  • In #TeamKaren, Kimberly’s Samantha Leonard (24) will change her usual tune by singing the Afrikaans Jan Blohm and Karen Zoid ballad “Groen Trui”, while worship leader PJ Pretorius from Secunda (26) will time travel back to the early 1970s with John Lennon’s iconic “Imagine”.
  • Comedic Fatman will be channeling legendary Joe Cocker with a booming version of “Unchain My Heart” and his fellow #TeamKahn talent Craig Lucas (23) from Cape Town will be tackling none other than Prince’s signature “Purple Rain”.
  • For #TeamLira, who only has one talent left, Luke Lovemore (23) will bring us back to the current charts with his rendition of Niall Horan’s “This Town”.
  • Pop star Bobby van Jaarsveld’s Caroline Brussow (32) from Bloemfontein will be going full ‘80s with Roxette’s pop hit “It Must Have Been Love” and musical theatre veteran Josh Ansley (31) will change his choice up this week with “Something Just Like This” by Coldplay and The Chainsmokers.

With one more person leaving the competition on Sunday, voting for the Top 6 talent will open at the end of the show and will close on Tuesday, 20 June at 22:00. Tickets for The Voice SA live shows are available from Computicket.

The Voice South Africa, sponsored by Dialdirect, is broadcast every Sunday night on M-Net channel 101 at 17:30 and every Monday night at 18:00 on M-Net City channel 115.

Viewers can also visit to watch exclusive interviews with the coaches and talent, and follow all the breaking news and conversations around the show on Twitter @VoiceSA / #TheVoiceSA or on the official “Voice SA” Facebook page. You can also download The Voice SA app today for exclusive show-related games and special features.


“Academy Gold” Internship Program Offers Exclusive Opportunity To Learn From Academy Members And Entertainment Industry Professionals

‘Academy Gold’ Adds Four Industry Partners; 20 to Participate in Pilot Year
 Program Kicks Off with Two-Day Orientation on June 15-16

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is proud to announce commitments from four additional industry partners – Creative Artists Agency (CAA), Illumination Entertainment, Legendary Entertainment and Overbrook Entertainment – to participate in Academy Gold, a new entertainment industry-wide summer internship and mentoring program that will expand opportunities for students and young professionals from underrepresented communities.  Each of the now 20 partners will sponsor up to three interns for the program, which kicks off on Thursday, June 15, with a two-day orientation that includes various industry speakers, studio and technology-based company tours and visits to the Academy’s Film Archive and Margaret Herrick Library.

Previously announced partners include Deluxe, The Walt Disney Company, Dolby Laboratories, FotoKem, FremantleMedia, HBO, IMAX, Lionsgate/Starz, Panavision, Paramount Pictures, Participant Media, Sony Pictures, Technicolor, Twentieth Century Fox Film, Universal Pictures and Warner Bros.

In this pilot year, 70 interns (including 18 interns who will be placed within the Academy) will participate in the Academy Gold program.  The eight-week program, which concludes on August 11, will offer participants networking opportunities with Academy members and industry professionals, screenings, studio tours and educational workshops.

Academy members and industry professionals will participate in panels discussing their crafts, including: Bobbi Banks (sound editor); Lorrie Bartlett (Partner and Co-Head of Talent, ICM); Maryann Brandon (film editor); Ruth E. Carter (costume designer); Jeff B. Cohen, Esq. (attorney); Destin Daniel Cretton (writer, “Short Term 12”);  Julie Ann Crommett (VP Multicultural Audience Engagement, Disney); Tonia Davis (VP Film, Chernin Entertainment); Christina Hodson (writer, “Transformers: Bumblebee”); Jordan Horowitz (producer, “La La Land”); Whitney James (makeup artist); Charles D. King (Founder & CEO, MACRO and executive producer, “Fences”); Stella Meghie (director, “Everything, Everything”); Jeff Miller (President, Studio Operations, Disney); Daryn Okada (cinematographer); Eric Pertilla (agent, Paradigm); Steves Rodriguez, CPA (Partner, Freemark Financial); Kim Roth (President of Production, MACRO); David Rubin (casting director); Demetrius Shipp Jr. (actor, “All Eyez on Me”); Justin Simien (writer-director-producer, “Dear White People”); Michael Tronick (film editor); Nancy Utley (President, Fox Searchlight Pictures); Michelle Watts (Principal, The Aziza Work Group); and Joe Wees (Senior VP Creative Advertising, Universal Pictures).  Visit for panelist updates.

Highlights from this summer’s program include:

Transformation – Future Focus Panel (June 21)

Industry leaders in conversation about the challenges and opportunities for those beginning their careers.  Panelists include Academy members and respected experts in their field.

Navigating a Successful Career in Hollywood (June 28)

What does it really take to have a successful career in Hollywood?  Hollywood veterans and newcomers candidly discuss the keys to being successful in the film industry.

Upgrade and Update – Technology Is Your Business (July 12)

Academy members and industry leaders discuss aspects of production and distribution, staying on top of the latest technology, and successful technologies and innovations incorporated into their work.

Anatomy of a Film Production – Above the Line (July 19)

A panel discussion giving above-the-line perspectives from individual directors, writers, actors and producers, who detail their personal career paths and stories while specifying tools and other ways to build and remain relevant in these careers.

Anatomy of a Film Production – Below the Line (July 26)

A cinematographer, casting director, costume designer, film editor, makeup artist, sound editor and other below-the-line talents discuss their collaborative processes and break down the specifics of what each of their jobs entail.

The Dream Team (August 2)

Support professionals including agents, lawyers, managers and publicists discuss their work.

The Academy Gold Talent Development and Inclusion Program will afford top film entertainment, technology, production services and digital media companies an opportunity to recruit and educate a nationwide pool of diverse talent.  The Academy also will build an alumni database to track the professional development of Academy Gold participants and provide a resource to connect alumni with one another upon completion of the program.

Additional support for Academy Gold is provided by The California Wellness Foundation.  Support for the Academy Foundation’s educational and outreach initiatives, which include Academy Gold, the Student Academy Awards, and the Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting, is provided in part by Walmart.

For more information about the Academy Gold program, visit


Coming Up On Carte Blanche – 18 June 2017

On M-Net & M-Net HD [101], Sunday 18 June 2017 at 19:00 & again on M-Net Plus 1 [901] at 20:00



Knysna – The Aftermath

It has been a week since fires ravaged the town of Knysna and close to 300km of coastline, destroying more than 600 homes and buildings in its path. With nine people dead, thousands left homeless and millions of rands in damages, residents have begun the arduous task of rebuilding their lives.  Carte Blanche revisits the town to witness how kind-hearted South Africans from all provinces are pulling together to assist those in need.

Producer: Liz Fish
Presenter: Derek Watts
Watch the trailer

African Horse Sickness

African horse sickness is a highly infectious disease and it is wreaking havoc in South Africa’s multi-million rand horse-racing industry.  As South Africa faces yet another year of isolation from the world equine export market, horse breeders, trainers and competitors are all desperate for answers.  Carte Blanche assesses the impact of this deadly illness.

Producer: Annalise Lubbe
Presenter: Derek Watts
Watch the trailer

Dirty Rivers

Over the years, hundreds of millions of rands have been spent to try and clean up the Hartbeespoort dam, which is infested with deadly bacteria and e-coli from sewage spills.  But it seems government has largely ignored the source of the problem. Carte Blanche follows the Hennops, Jukskei and Crocodile rivers to witness the shocking state of Gauteng and North-West Provinces’ water sources first-hand.

Producer: Sasha Schwendenwein
Presenter: Bongani Bingwa

Line-ups are subject to change. Stories can be viewed at

Facebook: Carte Blanche #CarteBlanche
Twitter: @carteblanchetv #CarteBlanche
Instagram: @carteblanchetv #CarteBlanche
WeChat: ID: carteblanchetv

dvd / blu-ray Review

Shut In (DVD) : Review


A widowed child psychologist, Mary (Naomi Watts), lives in an isolated existence in rural New England. As a winter storm arrives, she struggles to rescue a young boy, Tom (Jacob Tremblay – Smurfs 2, Room), before he disappears forever.

With Mary’s son, Stephen (Charlie Heaton), suffering after a horrific car accident, that killed her husband Doug (David Cubitt).

Shut In is a thriller, but it is a little lacking on the tension and thrill side of things. The plot, whilst not complex, is one of interesting, even if coupled with a few too many convenient facts. Mary fails to see a few things that are right under her nose, possibly blinded by guilt, or her own despair over her family situation. She is also hell bent on helping Tom. So much so, that this too puts her in jeopardy. Mary is helped, albeit remotely via video call, by fellow psychologist Dr. Wilson (Oliver Platt) who is helping her about as much with her son, as much as with her own personal issues.

The contained events of the film do make for an entertaining story, despite its numerous, and obvious flaws. So much so, that while it is perhaps not too easy to be out-guessing the main plot, it does seem rather predictable when one finally reaches the great reveal.

Shut In, is a middle of the line psychological thriller, that is perhaps a bit light on the thrills, and bit too obvious on the psychology. Still, it does make for some escapism, and will entertain along the way.


The disc is of a decent technical quality overall, with a main feature that falls in the middle, meaning like for it would likely vary, and have a fair amount of subjectivity.

Shut In is available now, to purchase on disc, in South Africa.


Video is encoded at a high average bitrate. There are no visible artefacts on screen, nor any visible colour bleed. Detail is maintained to a fair degree in darker scenes.

Viewers with the necessary hardware or software could sale up to a larger or higher resolution screen, should they wish.


Audio is presented via a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack, with a 2.0 downmix available.

Dialogue is clear via the centre speaker, with the weight of the soundtrack carried by the front channels. There is not a vast amount of use for the surround channels, other than a few scenes where they serve to expand the on-screen world, and further draw the viewer into the story.


Navigation is simple, and easy to follow. The main menu provides text links to play the main feature, scene selection sub-menu, and a link to a setup sub-menu.

The scene selection sub-menus comprise of ten colour, still thumbnails. These are small, and numbered, but not labelled, meaning there would be an amount of guesswork involved when trying to navigate to a specific part of the main feature.

The setup sub-menu allows for selection between Dolby Surround and Dolby Stereo audio options.

Bonus Features

There are no bonus features on the disc, with even the usual autoplay trailers at the beginning of many disc missing here.