Zim film festivals help tell our story


HARARE - Africa's rich history of storytelling is being carried on in the modern era through the medium of film, demonstrated recently at the Zimbabwe International Film Festival (Ziff) and International Images Film Festival for Women.

Ziff and International Images Film Festival for Women are two high-profile showcases for a selection of the best in film from Zimbabwe and abroad.

MultiChoice family was a sponsor of these events, believing that as a company committed to helping Africa’s stories to be told, it should invest in the showcasing of African film.

DStv’s Zambezi Magic channel sponsored Ziff, while MultiChoice Zimbabwe sponsored the IIFF.

MultiChoice Zimbabwe PR and publicity manager Liz Dziva said the festivals play a vital role in building the local film industry, and aim to highlight the importance of film to the continent.

“As Africa begins to play a larger and much less marginalised part in the global village, it is now more critical than ever that Africa owns its narrative, both at home and in the Diaspora.

“And Ziff 2018 did just that, as it celebrated Africa’s rich history and culture through the medium of film under the theme, Narratives from Africa.

More than just honouring the continent’s vibrant tapestry of sound, music and dress through film, the festival provided a space for other African conversations and themes that have never been fully appreciated,” she said.

Sharing these ideals is Zambezi Magic, a TV channel created to help local content reach an international platform. This channel offers a mix of locally-created content for six southern African countries: Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Botswana, Malawi and Swaziland.

Given this synergy between Ziff 2018 and Zambezi Magic, as well as the channel’s ongoing desire to help develop Zimbabwe’s film and TV production industry, Zambezi Magic was the natural brand used in the sponsorship of Ziff 2018.

Dziva said her company wants to use its influence in the film industry to play a positive role in Africa, helping to grow Africa’s creative industries into vibrant, economic powerhouses.

MultiChoice Zimbabwe’s sponsorship of the IIFF was equally designed to support the idea of promoting and building up local production capacity and giving the industry chance to have its content seen across a much broader spectrum of audiences.

“MultiChoice is among the biggest investors in local content in Zimbabwe, and has played a significant role in bringing the local television production industry to life in many countries across Africa.

But we believe we can do more to grow Africa’s creative industries into vibrant, economic powerhouses that will deliver the very best of local content. We want to champion local creatives and local content.

By investing in local film initiatives like these festivals, we are building, strengthening and showcasing the local creative sectors, ultimately helping to ignite Africa’s creative industries,” said Dziva.

She added that MultiChoice Zimbabwe is also positioning itself as a driving force behind the development of future film and TV talent, as evident in its participation in the MultiChoice Talent Factory initiative, MultiChoice’s continent-wide programme to inspire and nurture talented young people to work in local creative industries.

“Working in partnership with local creative organisations, MTF uses MultiChoice people, facilities and its network to provide a select group of young people with a tailored 12-month apprenticeship, equipping them with the skills, knowledge, experience and qualifications they need to launch successful creative careers.

“We believe that given an opportunity, an empowered new generation of filmmakers and TV professionals will rise to take their place at the forefront of local creative industries, producing the very best of local African content that our customers desire.

The launch of the MTF will also boost the quality of local film and television programming, creating a pipeline of great stories,” Dziva said.

MTF aims at addressing these challenges on various levels, bringing to life the MultiChoice goal of enriching lives through entertainment.

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