It’s A Great Week For South African Thespians

The best of South African talent takes centre stage this week following the announcement of the 2020 South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs) nominees, which celebrate South Africa’s local film and television talent.

13563_KNUCKLE CITY PREMIERE – Director Jahmil X.T Qubeka, Bongile Mantsai and Thembekile Komani

“2020 has started out positively for the local film scene,” says Helen Kuun, MD of Indigenous Film Distribution. “We are thrilled to have seen so many of the films on our slate receive SAFTA nominations. A number of them will be available across different platforms this week, giving various audiences the opportunity to see their favourite stars in action and to support local talent on all screens.”

Audiences can look forward to ‘Knukle City’, Jahmil X.T. Qubeka’s new movie, which opens in cinemas nationwide on Friday, 28 February. The gritty crime-drama tells the story of Dudu Nyakama (Bongile Mantsai), an aging, womanising professional boxer from the Eastern Cape and his career-criminal brother Duke (Thembekile Komani) who take one last shot at success and get more than they’ve bargained for. The film bagged ten SAFTA nominations – including Best Achievement in Directing, Best Achievement in Scriptwriting, Best achievement in Editing, Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Actor, and Best Supporting Actor.

Going up on DSTV Box Office on 28 February is the folk hero tale directed by Matthys Boshoff, ‘Die Verhaal van Racheltjie de Beer’, which was nominated for seven SAFTAs: Best Feature Film, Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Actor, Best Achievement in Sound Design, Best Achievement in Original Music/Score, Best Achievement in Editing, and Best Achievement in Production Design.

Available on Showmax is Sibusiso Khuzwayo’s ‘The Letter Reader’, produced by The Ergo Company which received a SAFTA nomination for Best Short Film. It tells story of Siyabonga, a 12-year-old boy from Johannesburg who is sent to a village in KwaZulu-Natal to live with his grandmother and discovers the power of words as he reads letters for people.

Also on Showmax is the riveting historical drama ‘An Act of Defiance’. Directed by Jean van de Velde, the film is about the lawyer Bram Fischer who defended Nelson Mandela and his co-defendants at the Rivonia Trial of 1963. It received two SAFTA nominations.

The hauntingly beautiful ‘Skemerson’, nominated for three SAFTAS, is now also available to buy on Takealot. The film tells the story of a young man battling a mental illness, who meets two strangers that change his life.

Congratulations to the Diprente team for ‘Queen Sono’, the crime drama series created by Kagiso Lediga, which is set to premiere on Netflix on 28 February.

The ‘Knuckle City’ premiere took place in Johannesburg last week and elicited cheers and a standing ovation from those in attendance.

By Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers.

Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry.

Catch him on Twitter:
And IMDb: