Category Archives: Film

Lavinia Kapewasha on Her Post-Apocalyptic Short Film- Iitandu

Rating: ★★★

On 16 May 2019, Lavinia Kapewasha premiered her short film Iitandu (Pieces) at the National Theatre of Namibia. The film, set in post-apocalyptic Namibia, explores traditions vs modernity, food security, corporation vs tension all within the context of the country’s past, present and future.

With a screenplay and direction by Kapewasha, Iitandu philosophically probes humanity’s need to survive at all cost and deliberately ends in a cliffhanger. The lead character, Mwadinohmo’s (played by Kapewasha) entire arc in the story is to survive, at any costs, but when her survival is halted by someone who snakes their way into her plans, her instincts go into hyper-drive.

The film thrives on exceptionally beautiful scenery as the cinematography places the viewer in Namibia’s nightmare world. Coupled with equally extraordinary performances by Kapewasha, Charl Botha and Jennifer Timbo, Iitandu is definitely on the forefront of changing Namibia’s cinematic experience.

Namib Insider caught up with Kapewasha to talk more on the creation of the film.

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Lavinia Kapewasha (Image: Provided)

 

What is the core message of the film? What do you want to achieve or have the audience grasp?

I am really into philosophy, ever-more fascinated by human behaviour, hence why I wanted the audience to leave with the question: Are we doing the right thing, as humans, as a species, as a community, with all that we have been biologically engineered to do? Our prime focus is to survive, so what can one do if someone’s actions hinge on your survival?

What was challenging about bringing the script of Iitandu to life?

As a writer, you can create the most unfathomable situation and orchestrate through the words, but once it’s down to bringing it into actuality, it may not go down as you wish. Space, location, costumes, parameters were all factors I never thought of while writing. Finding the right location was challenging, especially since I didn’t know the great ‘hidden’ locations Namibia has to offer. Seeing that this is a period piece, finding the materials, set items, costumes to create this world was tough. Where can you find the perfect dystopian shelter, that has enough grit, yet not too old in terms of style? Who can create costumes that will transport the viewer to then? Where can one buy futuristic enough items that add to the storyline and flair of the film? Does it give enough information? These questions haunted me as the only tell-tale to point towards the period was the set/costume/props that would give wind of that without having to make it so obvious. Also, how can you bring the viewer on this journey? How would you shoot it? Never-ending questions I was plagued with… too many questions. It all seemed over-ambitious…Despite the never-ending plaguing questions, having the right people, the right team to bring your vision to life was all that was needed.

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Behind The Scenes of Iitandu. (Image: Facebook)

How is this film bringing something new to Namibia’s film industry?

A film like this hasn’t been done before in Namibia, by a Namibian. I wanted to challenge myself, thereby challenging Namibian storytellers. It is opening up the scope of what we can do in the art of storytelling. We have the perfect landscape that is naturally gifted, therefore we must use it to its full potential. It serves as a reminder that anything is possible when we broaden our horizons. We should look to different genres and tones so we don’t oversaturate our small market with the sameness we see time to time. We have the power to show Namibia from a different lens.

Where to with Iitandu now that it has premiered?

Another screening is in talks. We are willing and excited about more Namibians to watch this film. Once screenings are over and hopefully festival runs, Iitandu will be available online for all to watch.

You also co-own a film production company. Are you working on your next project?

I am one of the founders of Dark Crown Productions alongside my partner Jenny Kandenge. Kandenge and I collaborated and created Dark Crown Productions to have two black women at the forefront of film/television and theatre. No doubt we have more projects in the pipeline. We aim to shine a light and tell stories. I cannot go into detail as yet, but we are working on projects. One of them, Untitled, will finally be able to be viewed this year. You just have to keep an eye out for more!

Watch Iitandu‘s Trailer here.

‘Find Small Sequences Within The Bigger Story’- Haiko Boldt on Film Editing & #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm

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Haiko Boldt editing #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm (Image: Provided)

Multi-award winning film editor, Haiko Boldt, started editing around 2003 at ONE Africa Television after sitting in on a lot of edits with the station’s Technology Officer, Madryn Cosburn. In 2007, Boldt decided to freelance as a Graphic Designer and Editor. For Boldt, film editing took off in 2010 as he had the opportunity to edit multiple short and feature films in the years after until now. Ever since Boldt has received best editor nods for multiple films.

Boldt, who is also the owner of Thunderboldt Design & Post Production, is working as Editor and Cinematographer on filmmaker Tim Huebschle’s upcoming feature film, #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm.

Namib Insider caught up with Boldt to talk more on his journey and the film.

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Cast & Crew of #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm (Image: Provided)

What was your very first job in film and how did you get it?

Talking specifically long-form feature or made for TV film I think my first direct job was helping the grip department hauling around sandbags and heavy equipment. This was a made for TV production for a German television station. I was lucky that I was sharing office space with the service production company working on the movie. They needed people for the grip department and asked if I was keen. Of course, I was.

What are some of the films you have worked on that you are most proud of?

I have worked on quite a few short films and can’t single out a specific one. I feel I have learnt something from each film I have edited. The film ‘Katutura’ by Florian Schott is special to me because it was the first fictional feature I edited. I am very proud of #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm because I did not only get to edit it, I also got to film it.

What attracted you to editing above all industry jobs?

I fell into editing. I was asked if I like to give it a try, I did and I enjoyed it. So there was no conscious decision to venture into editing specifically. My early work was mostly promotional videos, small adverts and documentary videos. What kept me continuing was that I enjoyed it. At the time when I decided to go freelance, there was a niche market as an editor in Namibia which I decided to focus on and pursue.

What editing system did you use, and why?

The choice of editing system for me is like any other. For example, a phone where you prefer the interface, functionality and look over another. It also happened by circumstance. I started off on a Media100 system, back then you still needed a whole room with equipment for the edit suite. That changed when everything became more digital and computer-based. We were working on Apple computers and Apple released Final Cut then, so we started using that. Over the years I have tried Premier Pro but just didn’t like the way the interface and software functioned and switched back to Final Cut X which is really fast for me to edit in. And recently, I have been using DaVinci Resolve as well and have started using that more because it covers all sections of the post-production workflow and the standard version is free.

 

You worked on the upcoming feature film, #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm, tell us about that experience.

It was and still is an awesome experience. I have been involved with the project for a long time. From reading an early script to location scouting on weekends with Director Tim Huebschle, table reads filming, castings in the beginning and then the final production. I am extremely fortunate to have been asked by the film’s Producer David Benade to film #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm and edit it. The filming process started with an extensive storyboarding session with the Director which took about 5 weeks. We thought about every shot and angle and discussed how it might look in the edit. We even added background pictures of the locations that were going to be filmed at. The production was intense. Long days, cold early mornings, rain in July and late nights that turned into early mornings. The cast and crew are all wonderful to work with. All were very motivated to make this film amazing. Personally, it was positively challenging as it was my first feature film as a Cinematographer. It meant a lot of research, study and preparation. I received a lot of support and I am very grateful for this. The edit went quite smooth because we had planned so much starting with the storyboard. Together with the Director, we worked out a system of editing in the mornings and making selections in the afternoons and David Benade cleaned up the audio on the weekends. This left us with a very solid first cut. All in all, we had a very good workflow and this made the edit easy.

So you are the man who sees this film before anyone else. What is your impression?

I am extremely happy with the outcome. It is a wonderfully authentic film, firmly rooted in Namibia. The passion and engagement of cast and crew are evident throughout and I think Namibians will definitely enjoy it.

As an editor, is there a piece of advice you’ve gotten at some point along the way that’s stuck with you?

Watch movies! Pause. Rewind. Ask yourself; How did they do that? Keep improving yourself and your craft. Find small sequences within the bigger story. But most of all practice, practice, practice!

Which part of the editing process do you enjoy the most? And the least?

Editing feature films is definitely one of my favourite things to do as an editor. There are parts of the process which are just not that creative which are less enjoyable like syncing the audio to the video or setting up the project. But these are vital steps to be able to make the rest of the project more fun to work on. The part which is most enjoyable is, once you have selected which takes to use, cutting the story together. Deciding when to add tension or what to reveal, adding energy to a section through faster cuts. Or turn it all around and trying again like a puzzle starting off with a different shot. Remembering that in a different take apart could work for this cut. And then finally ending up with an edit that flows. That is a great feeling and a lot of fun.

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Any thoughts on the Namibian film industry? What should be done to further grow the industry?

I think the Namibian film industry will always be small because we are a small country. To say we want to grow the industry is a very general goal. Grow it into what? If we don’t have a specific goal in mind how can we measure our progress? So maybe the industry has grown but just not as what we imagined personally. I feel it has grown, there are a lot more production companies than a few years ago. But that is only one aspect. In my opinion, if we want to grow we need to grow as individuals. We need to keep practising. Keep making films. Improve ourselves through studying our craft and through sharing. There are so many resources online and some of them free. We also have to approach filmmaking as a business. Otherwise, we will stay artists who don’t sell their creations and thus don’t make money which won’t enable us to grow. It’s not about resources, but about resourcefulness. Namibia has so many beautiful stories still waiting to be told.

The Film Commission Wants To Fund Your Film- Here’s How To Apply

The Namibia Film Commission invites filmmakers to submit their film applications for the 2019/2020 Funding Cycle.

Eligibility

– Namibian registered company.
– The applicant must be the producer, with a team containing a writer/script editor or
director.
– The producer should have the rights to the story with which they apply
– The team must, between them, have at-least two screen credits and the producer must have a producer credit, except for the newcomer category. Only the producer is required to have at-least one producer screen credit.
– All members of the team need not be Namibian.

In assessing applications, the following factors are considered:

– The quality of the project, its central idea and wide audience appeal.
– The marketplace potential of the project.
– The likelihood of the project achieving financial returns.
– The track record and or potential of the principles.
– The proposed level of involvement of the Namibian principals, cast and crew, facilities and locations to be used.
– The economic, employment, industry development and or cultural benefits for Namibia.

Applications (Application forms can be obtained from the Film Commission)

– Provide a complete application form.
– Attach any additional information to support your application.
-Incomplete applications will not be considered.
– Ensure you receive your Application Reference Number upon delivery to the Film Commission office.
-The selected teams must be willing to undergo a two-week script development workshop with a film expert, in Windhoek.

The Funding Categories Are:

2x Newcomer Short Film (N$100 000)
2x Experienced Short Film (N$250 000)
1 Documentary Film (N$300 000)
1 Feature Film (N$1 300 000)
1 Nǃxau ǂToma Film Fund (N$1 000 000)

An information sharing session will be held on 30 May 2019 with filmmakers to discuss the application process in detail.

CLOSING DATE: 28 JUNE 2019

Submissions should be emailed to gkamati@nfc.na & info@nfc.na or hand delivered at the Namibia Film Commission office, Nr. 17 Cnr of Feld and Newton Street, Ausspannplatz, Windhoek or hard copies mailed to: Namibia Film Commission Projects P.O. Box 41807, Ausspannplatz, Windhoek.

There should be a clear indication on which project you are applying. For any further information contact Mr. Gideon Kamati on 061 381 900.

5 Most Anticipated Namibian Films For 2019

As the year is getting in the full climax, many film projects are wrapping up production and preparing to the premiere.

These are the ones that we’re looking forward to seeing the most:

1. #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm 

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Photo: Facebook

Unarguably the most anticipated film in Namibia. This wonderfully authentic crime thriller, firmly rooted in Namibia follows a policewoman, who in her pursuit of investigating a series of murders is challenged by a ruthless reporter who exposes deep, dark secrets from her past to unhinge the case and ultimately, her life.

Director: Tim Huebschle
Starring: Elize de Wee, Armas Shivute, Pieter Greeff, Ralf Boll.
Expected Release: 10 October 2019

2. Baxu and The Giants

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Photo: Instagram

This live-action short film explores how rhino poaching triggers a social change in a village in Damaraland, told through the eyes of an 8-year-old girl, Baxu, who is in touch with nature and her own heritage. The film comes with a sense of poetry in the imagery; the music and the way the young hero tells her story, promising to take the viewer from the time of hunter-gatherers into the modern-day.

Director: Florian Schott
Starring: Camilla Jo-Ann Daries, West Uarije, Steven Afrikaner, Wafeeq /Narimab, Anna Louw.
Expected Release: 19 September 2019

3. Hairareb

Hairareb
Photo: Facebook

This feature follows a lonely farmer who faces a devastating drought, trying to open a new chapter with his new bride after he gets her to marry him by inciting her family with money. The film promises themes of love, jealousy, loss, materialism, and betrayal. The film represents a unique and beautiful portrayal of a truly Namibian story along with an intimate depiction of Namibian culture.

Director: Oshoveli Shipoh
Starring: David Ndjavera, Claudine de Groot, Hazel Hinda, Kadeen Kaoseb (KK).
Expected Release: 30 August 2019

4. Encore

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Photo: Instagram

The short film combines stage and screen as a dancer finds herself lost in an old theatre, where she meets a carpenter who shows her something that turns her reality upside down.

Director: Senga Brockerhoff
Starring: Odile Gertze, David Ndjavera
Release: 16 May 2019

5. The White Line

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Photo: Facebook

This feature film is about a love story that plays out within the context of Apartheid, following two people who found each other and fell in love regardless of the colour of their skin, their cultural or socio-economic backgrounds. The film explores Namibia’s history and aims to visually share the pain and subsequently, love, in Namibia’s past.

Director: Desiree Kahikopo
Starring: Girley Charlene Jazama, Jan-Barend Scheepers, Sunet Van Wyk, Mervin Uahupirapi.
Expected Release: 2019

WATCH: #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm teases October 2019 release

The second teaser for Tim Huebschle’s crime thriller, #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm was released on 20 March.

The feature film follows a policewoman, who in her pursuit of investigating a series of hateful murders is challenged by a ruthless reporter who exposes deep, dark secrets from her past to unhinge the case and ultimately, her life.

Watch the trailer below (viewer discretion is advised:

Namibia, Here’s How You Can Showcase Your Talent, Connect, Scout for Skills and Meet Other African Creatives

MultiChoice Talent Factory, MultiChoice Africa’s flagship Pan-African initiative launched an interactive online portal aimed at profiling and connecting Africa’s industry creatives and bringing pan-African talent and opportunities together in one place.

By simply registering on the digital portal, MultiChoice Talent Factory up-and-coming talent and industry professionals can network with each other, connect and collaborate.

The portal is the third touchpoint of the MultiChoice Talent Factory initiative following the launch of the Talent Factory’s Academies, a 12-month regional film training programme aimed at upskilling the next generation of passionate young film creatives launched in October 2018 and the Talent Factory Masterclasses launched in January this year to upskill industry professionals.

Register now: Talent Factory.

5 Namibian Short Films To Watch On YouTube

Looking For Iilonga

Simon’s wife borrowed money from a loan shark. Now Simon has to pay back the debt.
​He leaves his rural home to find work in the ruthless city. (Length: 17 mins 42 secs)

Orange Juice

A story of love and betrayal (Length: 8 mins 25 secs)

Where There’s Smoke

An ex-gunman is sent to rescue a hostage from a dangerous criminal but unknown to him he gets followed by a mysterious man. (Length: 10mins 17secs)

Everything Happens for a Reason

The film follows a man whose girlfriend is leaving him, there is a strange man following and threatening him and his phone gets stolen. He tries to make things right but whatever he does he seems to be getting into more and more trouble. His actions take him to the Christus Kirche overlooking Windhoek, where he faces all his new enemies. When the police arrive at the scene he seems to be saved – or is he? (Length: 14mins 32secs)

Tjiraa

This film explores the balancing act of two worlds. Vezuva returns home to find she is expected to marry her cousin. She is familiar with the custom but would like a compromise, as she loves someone else. (Length: 18mins)

Hairareb Trailer Is Here And It’s A Thrill!

After a sold out trailer screening at Ster-Kinekor a few days ago, Hairareb, the feature film by award winning director, Oshoveli Shipoh released its official trailer on 1 March.

Featuring David Ndjavera as Hairareb, and Claudine de Groot as his bride /Ininis, the trailer explores themes of love, jealousy, loss, materialism, and betrayal.

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David Ndjavera as Hairareb and Claudine de Groot as /Ininis in ‘Hairareb’

Hairareb is a well-off but lonely farmer who faces a devastating drought, trying to open a new chapter with /Ininis after he gets her to marry him by inciting her family with money. Music man Kadeen Kaoseb or KK as he is widely known, stars as /Ininis’s greedy, manipulative and much younger boyfriend, !Nausub. Hazel Hinda stars as Moira, Hairareb’s helper.

When Hairareb and /Ininis fall in love unexpectedly, their safety is put in danger.

Watch the exciting trailer below:

While an official release date is not known yet, the film is expected to be released later this year. The film is executively produced by Dantagos Jimmy-Melani with a script by Aina Kwedhi.

Desiree Kahikopo on Berlinale, Production Process and Vision for ‘The White Line’

Now that production for the Namibian feature film, The White Line is wrapped, Namib Insider sat down with the film’s director, Desiree Kahikopo to talk more on the filming process.

Desiree Kahikopo (photo: Vaultz Connect)
Desiree Kahikopo (Image: Vaultz Connect)

The White Line is your directorial debut. How was the story born? Why was this the story you decided to tell?

The White Line was a story I came up with during 2016, after watching a show on the American civil rights movement. Americans talk about their past and their struggles and all the stories that came with it, while us as Namibians, despite our rich past, don’t talk about ours, at least not visually as much. I came up with the title ‘The White Line’ and wrote it down in my notebook and left it at that for a while. After that, I saw something on Facebook on the old-location uprising and that’s when I came up with the story for The White Line, but when I came up with it, it wasn’t the love story it turned out to be. I told Micheal about the story I had written and the next year, in 2017, we decided to work on it. During that time, Girley Jazama conducted an interview with a child of an interracial couple and the story of his parents was really inspiring and upon some more research, we decided that we wanted to go this route and tell a love story in a time of apartheid. At the time I wasn’t thinking of directing at all. I was actually trying to come up with a director for the film, although I knew directing was always something I wanted to do, I didn’t think I was qualified or ready to do it yet. But one day I was driving to Windhoek and I heard from within me ‘why don’t you direct’? I swear it was literally the Holy Spirit. At first, I was like nope, I wouldn’t know what to do or where to begin, but then I asked myself if not now then when. So I just went for it.

Take us through the casting process. Was it easy or were there challenges.

For the lead character Sylvia, I knew already when I came up with the initial story that I wanted Girley for the role. Before The White Line, I was writing another story and for that, I was thinking of casting Girley for one particular character, so for The White Line, there was nobody else who could do Silvia justice in my eyes. For the other characters, I knew what I was looking for, but I didn’t really know if I would find them. At one point, Girley and I went to go and sit at Joe’s Beer House scouting for the white cast. Finding the right actors to play Anne-Marie and Pieter was a bit challenging, especially because of the nature of the story, but after going through a series of others, Sunet van Wyk and Jan-Barend Scheepers were suggested to me and when I saw them I knew they are perfect and exactly what I was looking for. Explaining the characters to them and seeing them take them on was awesome. For the characters Unotjari and Jacobine, we had to go through a series of actors too and then we decided on casting Mervin Cheez Uahupirapi and Vanessa Kamatoto. Charl Botha and a few others came through a casting agency, but we knew Charl was perfect for the role of Jan.

On set (photo: Vaultz Connect)
(Image: Vaultz Connect)

Can you talk a little bit about some of the specific production challenges you faced during filming? How big was your crew and how long did you film?

We had about 28 cast and crew members excluding the extra’s, but from the get-go, the challenge was always financing, mostly because the film was a period piece. Because of that, we knew that we were going to go over budget and we had hoped to raise the money that we needed before we wrapped, but that proved difficulties and still proves to be difficult. We had to film in 14 days and had to make sure that we don’t exceed that and we filmed in three different towns; Usakos, Karibib and Okahandja, so the scheduling had to be right. The cast and crew really did a great job handling the changes in locations and towns, the extras jumped in and were great, the other production challenges were a difference in opinion here and there but nothing hectic really.

This film is set in the 1960’s apartheid era. What were some of the challenges of making a ‘period piece’ in the recent past? How important was it to keep to a 1960s theme and how well is it incorporated in the film?

Well firstly the film is set in Windhoek, but we couldn’t really film in Windhoek because it has really developed over the years. Katutura is really development too, so that was challenging finding suitable locations that for at least a block you could work with, the roads, the streets, the houses both exterior and interior in Windhoek was difficult, so we had to go look outside in the smaller towns. The wardrobe was challenging; to find old South African police uniform and vehicles or just old cars like batons, and so forth was expensive to rent. It was really important to keep to the theme throughout the film in everything the audience will see, that it draws them into the time and space into the era and the lives of Sylvia and Pieter and those around them. We had to carefully check everything; wardrobe, houses (inside and outside), streets, cars, the accents, the languages, the food they ate, the things they drank everything, it wasn’t easy but we did it to the best of what we could do with what we had to work with. To say the least, I am very proud and happy with how the film turned out.

What were your goals for the film when you were starting out and what are the impact goals for the film now that it’s done?

When I started with this film I knew that I wanted it to travel outside Namibia, and I also wanted it to travel across all parts of Namibia. I wanted to help usher in a new dawn in the Namibian film industry, to break barriers in the industry not just in Namibia but in Africa as well. I had set my mind that I was going to submit it to international film festivals both major and minor, have the film first travel at festivals (and it will), get distribution in cinema’s around Southern African, East Africa and hopefully West African as well. I have spoken to a few distributors who are interested. We are looking to gain European and North American distribution, but we need the finished film because the distributors want to see a finished film and then the goal was to submit it to the Oscars. I really just want it to be one of the successful and recognised films out of Namibia and shine a light on the Namibian film industry. I started submitting recently the work-in-progress to festivals, praying to Jesus we get in.

How far is post-production for The White Line and when can we expect to see the film?

The film is complete, we just need that additional funding to get it out, and right now because the plan is to do the festival circuit first, we do not have a definite date for premier or release as of yet.

Production (Image: Provided)
Production (Image: Provided)

You recently delivered a presentation titled ‘Namibia: A Unique Voice within the African Cinematic Movement’ at the Berlinale Africa Hub. How important is a representation of the Namibian film industry, especially since its picking up momentum? How do we grow our industry and make it competitive with the world?

Representation is very important, I learned that more being at Berlinale, because we get to speak and let our voices be heard. We get to be seen as an industry that’s standing and active and as a people and shift whatever stereotype is out there about us. We want co-productions, collaborations, we want for things to change and contribute to that change that’s taking place. I have learned recently that we need to be in those places markets, festivals and have those discussions with fellow filmmakers and form those relationships because you can’t really form a relationship from afar. People will only assume about us unless we are present. Some filmmakers I met and distributors didn’t really know that Namibia has a film industry. So being there and talking to people and forming those relationships and learning from each other can only help build you as an individual and then the industry itself. We need private individuals to invest in film and corporate companies to fund films and we need collaboration and co-productions amongst our fellow Africans as well international producers and investors and we also need to build a cinema-going audience. You are right, Namibia’s film industry is picking up momentum and that’s really great, but I think we also need to kind of know where we want to go and how we want to get there, listening to presentations from East Africa (Kenya, Rwanda), Nigeria and South Africa you get a sense of who they are and where they want to be. First and foremost, we need to start looking at the film as a business that needs to sustain itself and us, story development, we hear that some stories take years before they are made, I am not saying take years but make sure your story is airtight. We need producers that understand the business of film and not just film as an art form, has a distribution and marketing plan/strategies and learn that it doesn’t happen overnight. I had to learn that doing The White Line, and working hard and working together selflessly.

Watch The White Line trailer below:

First Look At #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm- Teaser

The first teaser for #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm (2019) is out now.

Director Tim Huebschle’s upcoming crime thriller follows tough cop Meisie Willemse who has a dark secret buried in her past. As Willemse is busy solving a string of murders her personal history starts interfering with the investigation.

Check out the teaser to the Collective Productions produced film here:

Tick-Tock Short Film: Interview With Director Glen-Nora Tjipura

(Images: Shilongo Visuals)

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Cast and Crew of Tick-Tock at the recent film screening in Windhoek.

One of the most powerful tools activists and nonprofits can use to shape public opinion and galvanizing public support for causes is the power of film. ‘Tick-Tock’, a short film funded by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and executively produced by the Women’s Action for Development (WAD) puts violence against women in the spotlight.

The short spreads the message many gender-based violence victims are and should continue to gear toward. The message is simple: Get out and get help. Shot with a budget of under N$100 000, ‘Tick Tock’ follows Anna (played by Ebba Shambwila) as she struggles to get out of an abusive relationship with her partner, Theo (played by Adonis Jossobs). The film was co-written, co-directed and co-produced by Glen-Nora Tjipura and Ndakalako Shilongo. It was shot by Sylvanus Valombola and edited by Tabizo Dube.

Watch the trailer here.

Namib Insider caught up with Tjipura to discuss the inspiration for the film, collaborations and her film directing debut.

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Ndakalako Shilongo and Glen-Nora Tjipura

In a sense, the film brings forth the importance of self-care. Why did you see it fit to tell the story with this type of spin?

I am the biggest advocate of taking care of yourself. I am into personal growth and I would like to tell stories that can empower us and also show the potential that we have to overcome anything.

How much of this film comes from a personal place?

Well personally I have not been in any physical abuse relationship, but I have had my fair share of emotional abuse and manipulation. Also, I have witnessed friends and even some family members go through what we depicted in the film.

What was the most challenging thing about making the movie?

Oh, there are so many, but I think the most challenging factor was time, we had a short span of time do make the movie and we had to make do with what we had.

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Ebba Shambwila and Adonis Jossobs.

This was your film directorial debut. How important is this to you, personally, and to your career?

I still can’t believe I made a movie, that I wrote, directed and produced, someone still needs to pinch me. It is an important stepping stone into being an all-around storyteller because I am not only an actor, I am also all these other hats that I wore during the movie. Watching your concept go from paper to screen is the most surreal feeling ever.

You have collaborated on the film with Ndakalako Shilongo. Is it important to collaborate with your colleagues? How do collaborations benefit the career of filmmakers?

We co-wrote, co-produced, co-directed, and it was amazing because first of all we are wearing different hats and so it was easier to do all the different jobs because were she couldn’t be, I could. And vice-versa. I think people should collaborate more often, it makes the job much easier plus creatively it becomes a much stronger project.

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Namibian short film, ‘Another Sunny Day’ headed to Rhode Island

Another Sunny Day’ a short non-fiction film by Tim Huebschle has been selected as part of the 12th edition of the Short Short Story Film Festival, which will take place in Providence, Rhode Island on Saturday, November 24th.

Highlighting albinism, the film tells the story of how life must be for someone whose skin has no protection from the sun, living in a country that averages over 80% sunshine during any given year.

With several hundred quality submissions from more than seventy countries, ‘Another Sunny Day’ made it as one of the selected 36 films, which will be showcased in two programme of 18 films each. The film will be showcased under the Heartstrings programme.

Thirty countries from six continents are represented, with 26 films making their U.S. premieres, including eight world premieres. 

Festival goers vote on their three favorite films to determine award winners in each program. A panel of Spoiler Alert Radio interviewees judge the films and selects the best in each program. Commissioned custom art objects created by past festival participants are presented to the winners.

The film previously made it to the top 10 finalists of the Discovery Channel ‘Don’t Stop Wondering’ Award.

Huebschle submitted the film to over 150 festivals using FilmFreeway, an online festival submission platform that allows you to filter out festivals according to entrance fees, etc. Of those 150 plus submissions thus far 15 were successful. Roughly 10%.

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“My goal was to basically spend no money on submitting ‘Another Sunny Day’ to festivals, because the movie was made on zero budget,” Huebschle says.

This is what the films’ journey has looked like thus far with 15 festival screenings all over the world:

• TriForce Short Film Festival
London
United Kingdom
December 2, 2017

• Sao Paulo International Short Film Festival
Sao Paulo, Brazil
August 26, 2018

• Copenhagen ShortFilm Festival
Copenhagen, Denmark
November 8, 2018

• Gold Coast Film Festival / Commonwealth Games 2018
Surfers Paradise, Australia
April 4, 2018

• Jozi Film Festival / Discovery Channel
Johannesburg, South Africa
September 21, 2017

• Festival del Cinema Africano, d’Asia e America Latina
Milan, Italy
March 21, 2018

• Silicon Valley African Film Festival
San José, United States
October 5, 2018

• AfryKamera
Warsaw, Poland
April 21, 2018

• Shorts@Fringe
Azores, Portugal
May 25, 2018

• Dieciminuti Film Festival
Ceccano, Italy
March 20, 2018

• International Changing Perspectives Short Film Festival
Istanbul, Turkey
April 10, 2018

• International Film Festival on Disability (FIFH)
Cannes, France
September 16, 2017

• InShort Film Festival
London, United Kingdom
September 14, 2018
• Lake International PanAfrican Film Festival
Kisumu, Kenya
November 11, 2017

• KRAF
Rijeka, Croatia
December 2, 2017

“The film came from a place of passion and the greatest reward is to see that the passion transcends our national borders,” Huebschle says.

Watch: Hairareb Teaser Trailer

Set to come out early in 2019, ‘Hairareb’ represents a unique and beautiful portrayal of a truly Namibian story along with an intimate depiction of its culture, while also presenting themes with universal appeal.

The story is told in English, through the eyes of one of Namibia’s oldest and most deeply rooted tribes; the Damara/Nama, and hence the film is an introduction and tribute to the tribe, incorporating Namibian cinema fit for both local and international audiences.

Related: ‘A LOVE LETTER FROM NAMIBIA’- HAIRAREB MOVIE COMES IN 2019

Watch the teaser trailer here:

Jan-Barend Scheepers On His The White Line Character & The Acting Gig

In the upcoming Namibian feature film by Desiree Kahikopo The White Line, Jan-Barend Scheepers plays Pieter De Wet, a young Afrikaner police officer in the early 1960’s Windhoek.

Under the circumstances of the era, Pieter is forced to make difficult choices that will have ripple effects in the future for their unborn child.

Namib Insider did a Q&A with Scheepers;

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Tell us more about your character in The White Line film.

He is a complex character, who struggles with the contradictions between his beliefs, heart and the society (and its laws) which he finds himself in, and especially, has to uphold because of his profession. He feels torn, but cannot see a way out of what is expected of him. He is somewhat of a victim, who has always been subservient to the larger powers around him, which dominates his life; including his abusive, patriarchal father, a dominating and conniving sister, and obviously the accepted Afrikaner culture and its tyrannical expectations on which white men must conduct themselves. Thus far, he has gotten through his formative years by keeping his head down and trying to follow what is expected of him. This is why the police force initially seemed like a good fit. However, now that he has become older, he starts to have questions. He cannot ignore the truth of his heart and what he sees as blatant injustice against the basic good in all people.

Without revealing much, what is your favourite line the film?

“Hoe is jou hart so vol haat? Veral teen eimand wat niks aan jou gedoen het nie? Mense wat jou net hulp en groot gemaak het? Jy vergeet dat dit die eienste mense is wat jou al jou morele waarde geleer het.”

What is The White Line experience like for you?

It was amazing to work closely with so many highly functional creatives. I was very impressed to be in a space filled with very large personalities, however, everyone was very aware of themselves and emotionally conscious. As with any project, there are occasional tensions, and I was so impressed with the manner in which people considered each other, articulated their frustrations and could let the steam off. Comparing this to my usual industry, being that of construction, it was a breath of fresh air. In construction rampant ego is often very unconscious and emotionally unaware. Resentment and frustration bubbles easily and there is seldom a chance to let steam out and calm a situation. Normally, in construction, this is only done with a lot of drinking at an occasional on-site social event, which is better than nothing but has toxic and high-risk aspects which we are too easily accustomed and willing to ignore in Namibia.

What’s the biggest challenge about taking on this role?

The other lead roles were being done by really amazing actors and actresses. I was very aware that I had to step into some very big shoes to do justice to the role I was given alongside these incredibly professionally crafty-people. Additionally, my spoken Afrikaans is very informal normally and I really had to work on adopting a more ‘conventionally’ spoken Afrikaans.

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What do you love about this character?

That he is a white man dealing with a great struggle and hopes to follow his heart, despite the risk and the cultural expectations on his shoulders.

What do you hate about this character?

Hate is a strong word, but in the end, he was not strong enough to… well, I don’t really know what options he had? Was it martyrdom? Was it exile? I don’t know. I do not envy the position he was in, but he was not ready in his own journey of personal growth to take on the challenge life presented him with.

How is this character like you? Or are you two completely different from one another?

Good question. I myself have had to wrestle with the cultural expectations and taboos of being an Afrikaner man in Namibia. Having been in several mixed-race relationships, I know to an extent the difficulty of dealing with my community’s condescension, judgement and even the ‘it’s just a little joke’ type jabs that I still get for having crossed the ‘white line’. However, I cannot for a second claim to know the depth of my character’s struggle. It was a bubble of Afrikaner Nationalist Propaganda. I am not part of a family who suggests that crossing the ‘white line’ is unacceptable. In fact its one of my greatest privileges that I have always been supported and even encouraged to follow my heart despite my partner’s ethnic background. So I can say I have an idea of what Pieter’s journey and struggle entails, but I am fully aware of how much easier life has been for me, comparatively growing up in an independent Namibia.

Besides yourself, which actor in this production is going to blow people away?

My lover in the movie, Sylvia (played by Girley Jazama)…. Wow. How absolutely humbling and rich it was to have the privilege to share the screen with an actress such as herself.

Who’s the funniest person in the cast, in real life?

My character’s brother in law, Jan, played by Charl Bota is an absolute clown! Permanent jokes and he kept us all smiling.

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Acting

When did you first start acting?

My mother forced me (kicking and screaming) to attend drama class at the College Of The Arts when I was 6 years old (1993). But not long afterwards I fell in love with it. I continued acting until 17. Unfortunately, being a teenager, and struggling to fit into what is considered ‘manly’ in Namibia, I stopped drama for almost 13 years. I am very, very glad to be back.

Do you have a preference for theatre or film?

Both are amazing for their own reasons.

What do you think is the most important characteristic to have as an actor?

To be able to fully embody the life of another. To adopt the struggles, doubts and frustrations which has moulded the character. To believe you have experienced it yourself.

Describe your acting style.

I don’t even know, but I guess method acting. Being someone who reads widely on psychology, I try to break my character down into their psychological aspects and pathologies.

Who is your favourite all-time actor, dead or alive and why?

I’ll give two, as the first one is a bit lame: Sir Anthony Hopkins and the second is Christoph Waltz. Just the subtle gestures and eye movements which add so much power to their characters and scenes. I have so much respect for them.

What do you do when you are not being an actor?

A lot. Life is meant to be lived to its fullest. I am a renewable energy Project Manager and Project Developer at InnoSun Energy Holding, where I build solar and wind farms across Namibia. I also love history, psychology and philosophy. I am very interested in Politics, Economics and trying to work out how we are going to develop Namibia. Finally, some people seem to think I’m able to throw some of the best farm parties in Namibia, but that’s just what they say so I can’t comment 😉

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This ‘n That

What is your basic temperament?

I’ll use the five trait personality model: A few years back, I would say I was:
Very high in Openness
Very high in Agreeableness
Very high in Neuroticism
Quite Low in Conscientiousness
Very high in Extroversion
But now, after several intense years of personal work and growth, I have evened out a lot. I have reduced my Agreeableness and massively reduced my Neuroticism (fewer people-pleasing), while I have made huge strides in improving my conscientiousness.

Where do you get your news?

Mainly Aljazeera, The Economist, YouTube. However, if a New Era or a Namibian newspaper is around I’ll give it a scan.

What is your favourite sport? Do you follow it professionally?

At this stage, it is simply Yoga, so it’s not really something to follow. I’ll watch rugby if it’s an international game and I’ll watch soccer, but only during the world cup.

How do you feel about ageing?

Hahahaha. Great question. I am lucky being male, I guess. So, I recently decided to take my time and worry less about the rat race. I don’t feel a need to have kids before I am 40. I just started using a face cream for the first time in my life… hahaha. I plan to stay out the sun, eat healthily, exercise regularly, build amazing connections with those around me and permanently commit to learning and growing. Mental health is one of the central pillars to long term well being in my opinion. I and my group of friends recently decided we are going to live to 130. That means staying relevant. Not aiming to retire. Doing what you love. Building one’s community. Always learning. Adopting a lifestyle of ‘life cycles’ rather than that of a career. I was massively inspired by a podcast series a friend of mine, Erik Salamon, helped with: The 200 Year Old | A Future-facing Podcast | Sanlam.

What are your favourite TV programs?

Game of Thrones.

What outdated slang do you use on a regular basis?

“Coolio” and “Schweet”

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What movie can you watch over and over without ever getting tired of?

The King’s Speech starring Colin Firth.

When was the last time you got to tell someone “I told you so”? What was it about?

I try not to do the ‘told you so’ thing. It’s a bit arrogant and it undermines my belief that everyone is on their own journey and as long as they commit to growth, I cannot fault you on where you are. However, if I had to stretch for an answer, I’d maybe say when Donald Trump got elected. Not that I hoped for it, but it was clear that the loud-left-leaning narrative and commentators were being so arrogant and condescending that they had likely alienated much much more people than they could have possibly imagined. Which seems to have been the case.

What movie, meme, or video always makes you laugh no matter how often you watch it?

‘How Animals Eat Their Food’:

What’s the worst thing you’ve eaten out of politeness?

Tarantula in Cambodia.

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If you built a themed hotel, what would the theme be and what would it be like?

It would be in Mongolian yurts in the plains between Lüderitz and Aus. Everyone gets to ride horses and attempt to do mounted bow hunting of springbok or Oryx for dinner.

What’s the dumbest thing someone has argued with you about?

Once a very intelligent Namibian public figure privately argued with me that SWAPO never won the armed liberation struggle, as they had lost many time more soldiers than the South African forces. I suggested that the number of lost lives do not determine whether a side wins or loses, but that it is purely based on the final strategic outcomes. When he argued against this and said it is nonsense, I replied: “I guess you believe that Germany beat Russia in the Second World War, seeing that Russia lost almost 10 times as many soldiers.” He was quiet after that.

 

31 Horror Movies To Watch This October 2018

It’s October, which means you can now sanely obsess over horror movies, on-screen blood and terrifying screams. From October 1 through 31, you’ll be able to stay on schedule with the best nostalgia of horror & thriller the movie industry has to offer. Here is Namib Insider‘s picks for October 2018.

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1. The Nun (2018)

When a young nun at a cloistered abbey in Romania takes her own life, a priest with a haunted past and a novitiate on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate. Together, they uncover the order’s unholy secret.

2. It Follows (2015)

After carefree teenager Jay, sleeps with her new boyfriend, Hugh, for the first time, she learns that she is the latest recipient of a fatal curse that is passed from victim to victim via sexual intercourse. Death, Jay learns, will creep inexorably toward her as either a friend or a stranger.

3. The Babadook (2014)

A single mother, plagued by the violent death of her husband, battles with her son’s fear of a monster lurking in the house, but soon discovers a sinister presence all around her.

4. It (2017)

Seven young outcasts in Derry, Maine, are about to face their worst nightmare — an ancient, shape-shifting evil that emerges from the sewer every 27 years to prey on the town’s children. Banding together over the course of one horrifying summer, the friends must overcome their own personal fears to battle the murderous, bloodthirsty clown known as Pennywise.

5. Mother! (2017)

A couple’s relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home, disrupting their tranquil existence.

6. 13 Sins (2014)

A desperate, debt-ridden salesman agrees to perform an increasingly hideous set of tasks in order to win millions of dollars.

7. The Lazarus Effect (2015)

Medical researcher Frank, his fiancee Zoe and their team have achieved the impossible: they have found a way to revive the dead. After a successful, but unsanctioned, experiment on a lifeless animal, they are ready to make their work public. However, when their dean learns what they’ve done, he shuts them down. Zoe is killed during an attempt to recreate the experiment, leading Frank to test the process on her. Zoe is revived — but something evil is within her.

8. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

Several Midwestern teenagers fall prey to Freddy Krueger, a disfigured midnight mangler who preys on the teenagers in their dreams, which, in turn, kills them in reality.

9. Hollow Man (2000)

After years of experimentation, brilliant but arrogant scientist Sebastian Caine has discovered a way to make matter invisible. Determined to achieve the ultimate breakthrough, Caine pushes his team to move to the next phase – using himself as the subject. The test is a success, but when the process can’t be reversed, Caine seems doomed to a future without flesh.

10. The Witch (2015)

In 1630 New England, panic and despair envelops a farmer, his wife and their children when youngest son Samuel suddenly vanishes. The family blames Thomasin, the oldest daughter who was watching the boy at the time of his disappearance. With suspicion and paranoia mounting, twin siblings Mercy and Jonas suspect Thomasin of witchcraft, testing the clan’s faith, loyalty and love to one another.

11. Insidious: The Last Key (2018)

Brilliant parapsychologist Elise Rainier receives a disturbing phone call from a man who claims that his house is haunted. Even more disturbing is the address, 413 Apple Tree Lane in Five Keys, N.M., the home where Elise grew up as a child. Accompanied by her two investigative partners, Rainier travels to Five Keys to confront and destroy her greatest fear, the demon that she accidentally set free years earlier.

12. Truth or Dare (2018)

Olivia, Lucas and a group of their college friends travel to Mexico for one last getaway before graduation. While there, a stranger convinces one of the students to play a seemingly harmless game of truth or dare with the others. Once the game starts, it awakens something evil, a demon which forces the friends to share dark secrets and confront their deepest fears. The rules are simple but wicked, tell the truth or die, do the dare or die, and if you stop playing, you die.

13. Slice (2018)

In a spooky small town, when a slew of pizza delivery boys are slain on the job, two daring survivors set out to catch the culprits behind the cryptic crime spree.

14. Poltergeist (1982)

Strange and creepy happenings beset an average California family, the Freelings, Steve, Diane, teenaged Dana, eight-year-old Robbie, and five-year-old Carol Ann, when ghosts commune with them through the television set. Initially friendly and playful, the spirits turn unexpectedly menacing, and, when Carol Ann goes missing, Steve and Diane turn to a parapsychologist and eventually an exorcist for help.

15. Hellraiser (1987)

Sexual deviant Frank, inadvertently opens a portal to hell when he tinkers with a box he bought while abroad. The act unleashes gruesome beings called Cenobites, who tear Frank’s body apart. When Frank’s brother and his wife, Julia, move into Frank’s old house, they accidentally bring what is left of Frank back to life. Frank then convinces Julia, his one-time lover, to lure men back to the house so he can use their blood to reconstruct himself.

16. The Evil Dead (1981)

Ashley “Ash” Williams, his girlfriend and three pals hike into the woods to a cabin for a fun night away. There they find an old book, the Necronomicon, whose text reawakens the dead when it’s read aloud. The friends inadvertently release a flood of evil and must fight for their lives or become one of the evil dead. Ash watches his friends become possessed, and must make a difficult decision before daybreak to save his own life in this, the first of Sam Raimi’s trilogy.

17. Sinister (2012)

True-crime writer Ellison Oswald is in a slump; he hasn’t had a best seller in more than 10 years and is becoming increasingly desperate for a hit. So, when he discovers the existence of a snuff film showing the deaths of a family, he vows to solve the mystery. He moves his own family into the victims’ home and gets to work. However, when old film footage and other clues hint at the presence of a supernatural force, Ellison learns that living in the house may be fatal.

18. Deliver Us From Evil (2014)

As a veteran member of a South Bronx precinct, NYPD Sgt. Ralph Sarchie has seen more than his share of dark and horrifying events, so many that they have begun to poison his soul. Sarchie further finds his beliefs and understanding pushed to the limit when he and his partner investigate a particularly bizarre incident. He forms an alliance with a renegade priest, who tries to convince Sarchie that real evil, and demons, do exist.

19. The Darkness (2016)

Peter Taylor, his wife Bronny and their two children return to Los Angeles after a fun-filled vacation to the Grand Canyon. Strange events soon start to plague the family, including young son Michael’s increasingly erratic behavior. The Taylors learn that Michael brought back some mysterious rocks that he discovered inside a cave. Unfortunately, something followed them home as the clan now find themselves in a battle with a supernatural force that preys on their worst fears.

20. The First Purge (2018)

To push the crime rate below one percent for the rest of the year, the New Founding Fathers of America test a sociological theory that vents aggression for one night in one isolated community. But when the violence of oppressors meets the rage of the others, the contagion will explode from the trial-city borders and spread across the nation.

21. The Possession (2012)

When their youngest daughter, Em, becomes strangely obsessed with an antique wooden box bought from a yard sale, parents Clyde and Stephanie see little cause for alarm. However, Em becomes increasingly unstable, leading the couple to fear the presence of a malevolent force. To their horror, Clyde and Stephanie learn that the box contains a dybbuk, a dislocated spirit that inhabits, and ultimately devours, a human host.

22. Mirrors (2008)

In a bid to pull his shattered life back together, troubled ex-cop Ben Carson takes a job as a security guard at the burned out ruins of a once-prosperous department store. As Ben patrols the charred hallways, he begins to see horrifying images in the ornate mirrors that still adorn the walls. Ben soon realizes that a malevolent force is using the mirrors to gain entrance into this world, threatening the lives of his wife (Paula Patton) and children.

23. The Descent (2005)

A year after a severe emotional trauma, Sarah goes to North Carolina to spend some time exploring caves with her friends; after descending underground, the women find strange cave paintings and evidence of an earlier expedition, then learn they are not alone: Underground predators inhabit the crevasses, and they have a taste for human flesh.

24. Get Out (2017)

Now that Chris and his girlfriend, Rose, have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend getaway upstate with Missy and Dean. At first, Chris reads the family’s overly accommodating behavior as nervous attempts to deal with their daughter’s interracial relationship, but as the weekend progresses, a series of increasingly disturbing discoveries lead him to a truth that he never could have imagined.

25. Split (2017)

Though Kevin has evidenced 23 personalities to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher, there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all of the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey, Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him, as well as everyone around him, as the walls between his compartments shatter.

26. The Visit (2015)

Becca and younger brother Tyler say goodbye to their mother as they board a train and head deep into Pennsylvania farm country to meet their maternal grandparents for the first time. Welcomed by Nana and Pop Pop, all seems well until the siblings start to notice increasingly strange behavior from the seemingly charming couple. Once the children discover a shocking secret, they begin to wonder if they’ll ever make it home.

27. Hush (2016)

A deaf writer who retreated into the woods to live a solitary life must fight for her life in silence when a masked killer appears in her window.

28. Unfriended (2014)

One night, while teenagers Blaire, Mitch, Jess, Adam Ken and Val take part in an online group chat session, they are suddenly joined by a user known only as “Billie227.” Thinking it’s just a technical glitch, the friends carry on their conversation… until Blaire begins receiving messages from someone claiming to be Laura Barns, a classmate who killed herself exactly one year prior. As Blaire tries to expose Billie’s identity, her friends are forced to confront their darkest secrets and lies.

29. Hereditary (2018)

When the matriarch of the Graham family passes away, her daughter and grandchildren begin to unravel cryptic and increasingly terrifying secrets about their ancestry, trying to outrun the sinister fate they have inherited.

30. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

When Sally hears that her grandfather’s grave may have been vandalized, she and her paraplegic brother, Franklin, set out with their friends to investigate. After a detour to their family’s old farmhouse, they discover a group of crazed, murderous outcasts living next door. As the group is attacked one by one by the chainsaw-wielding Leatherface, who wears a mask of human skin, the survivors must do everything they can to escape.

31. Halloween (2018) – Coming This October!

It’s been 40 years since Laurie Strode survived a vicious attack from crazed killer Michael Myers on Halloween night. Locked up in an institution, Myers manages to escape when his bus transfer goes horribly wrong. Laurie now faces a terrifying showdown when the masked madman returns to Haddonfield, Ill., but this time, she’s ready for him.

How To Ace Your Cold Read Audition & Get That Role

Cold read auditions are auditions where you come in with almost nothing memorized; you may have received the material a day in advance or on arrival at your audition.

Namibia’s audition scene is mostly made out of cold read auditions. Cold read auditions can be daunting. However, it helps to be prepared.

Follow these 5 vital tips and get that role:

1. Prepare for your audition.

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There is a common misconception that it is impossible to prepare for a cold read audition. And yes, although you may not receive the actual audition material until right before, there are quite a few wonderful ways you can prepare. Going into an audition you should know what you’re auditioning for and therefore have the opportunity to research the show or film and become familiar with not only the characters but the time period, the story, the theme, and so on. Learn more about previous projects from the director and show up prepared.

Act

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Many aspiring actors come in and literally read when asked to read. If there is one thing directors hate more than anything is ‘pretend acting’. Acting means to do, not to talk. When you are outside the audition hall, take the script and memorize the part you want and walk in to act, not to read. As much as it’s not a sin to read, look up from the script. The people running the audition know that you had limited time with the piece of work and are aware that it won’t be perfect. Don’t worry about getting the lines word for word. Pay more attention to the performance and what you feel. Show real emotion.

Have confidence

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The fact that you showed up to audition is already an achievement. It shows guts. So don’t be afraid to let loose. Walk in the door with your held head high. You don’t get sympathy points if you’re nervous, not feeling well, or having a bad day. Leave it outside the door. You are being evaluated from the minute you walk in, so practice good posture and body language before you walk into the audition room. BUT, be wary of overconfidence and be ready to follow direction.

Be Punctual

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People speak really fast and it damages their audition because no one can understand them. This is because they came late to the audition and didn’t have much time to go through their lines. Being punctual will help you calm your nerves- which are inevitable. Being punctual also helps to get yourself energized. Jump around, dance to a great jam, and move! As crazy as it may seem, it can really help pump you up for an audition.

Use the ‘magic’ words

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Walk-in with a big natural smile, and say hello if the casting team is looking at you. Again, when they are done with you, regardless of how you felt you’ve done, just give a big lovely smile and say ‘thanks’ or ‘thank you very much’. Being lovely is something to cultivate. Our industry is so small but trust me, there are too many prima donnas still.

Visual Storytelling Through Gondwana’s Lens

There are many ways of telling a story, one such way is through Visual Narratives. These stories may be told using still photography, illustration, or video, and can be enhanced with graphics, music, voice and other audio.

Gondwana Collection makes some of Namibia’s best visual stories. Namib Insider spoke to Jescey Visagie, Brand Manager at Gondwana as she shares how they work closely with an exceptional Windhoek-based film team called Prostudio.

How is an idea for a visual borne?

Inspiration comes from our passion and love for Namibia and her people as well as the preservation of the country’s heritage.

What is your storytelling style?

Our style of storytelling is one that evokes transformation, refreshes souls, and changes perspectives, while simultaneously striving to connect to people in a genuine and unforgettable way.

What skills do you think are most important for visual storytelling?

The most vital skills are; creativity, attention to detail, connecting to people, vibrant imagery, clear sound, suitable music to visuals, clear focal point and accurate information.

What makes a good story, in your opinion?

A good story is one that informs and adds value to other’s lives.

What tips do you have for aspiring visual storytellers?

Photographers, videographers, graphic designers and writers should work together, understand the importance and value of a story. Additionally, it is always about a good story and its aim.

What equipment makes visual storytelling easier and good, at the same time?

The suitable camera equipment, factual information and an excellent script.

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Where should aspiring storytellers start with their visual story?

Always start with an idea, determine this idea’s importance, do adequate research and contact the appropriate people for this visual story. Most importantly, be informed about that which is taking place within the world, your country and community, as great stories are often a conversation or click away.

Check out more of Gondwana’s content on YouTube.

 

Where is the Arts & Culture Policy?

By Nashilongweshipwe Mushaandja

 

 

Why are Namibian artists, educators and cultural workers kept in the dark about the status arts and culture policy in the making?

Is it finally done? Why is there sudden silence regarding this significant national document that concerns the future of artistic praxis and cultural heritage of this country? How is it that the making of a single national document has taken 18 years for it to be created and finalized? What does this mean for its implementation, when we eventually get to that stage? Is there something that the Directorates of Arts and Culture, the government at large and other involved stakeholders are hiding from us?

Do we realize what harm this tedious and tardy process is causing to the well-being and development of cultural and creative sectors? These are just some of the many questions that come up during some of the difficult dialogues that we have amongst ourselves as cultural workers during moments of self-care in our fight for dignity and rightful place in a fragmented and displaced sector.

But where is the policy? Last year, while working at John Muafangejo Art Centre, I posed this question and I was told that it is back to Cabinet. What does this mean? What is happening now?

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While I am not a policy expert, I write this critique as an artist and educator with genuine interests of seeing a transformation in the local arts sector. We haven’t heard anything about the policy in a while, at least nothing thorough in the public sphere.

My questions come from my activist instinct to respond to our overdue and much needed holistic development in the arts and culture sectors. While I am an advocate of artists being the owners and agents of their own transformation instead of relying on the government, it is no doubt that we are still passengers of a sinking ship because of this one politicized and strange national document that is supposed ‘to guide us to our destination’. Our hands are tied and our legs are in chains. It is the arts and culture administrators that have these particular keys to this paper.

Now we can also pose the questions, what was the purpose of that 2015 conference? Who did it serve? Do we realize that it was unsuccessful in principle because the enthusiasm, ideas and hope that was generated there eventually disappeared into thin air?

What happened to Honourable Katrina Hanse-Himarwa’s words “The days of the 500 dollar artist are over”? Does she know that young and graduating artists are still falling into the dysfunctional, corrupt and unstructured industry in which many of them do not manage to sustain their professional practices? Artists in the regions remain least supported and excluded by this elitist-patriarchal system, of which our government is the main architect. The struggling artist continues their walk.

It is often said that Namibia is lucky to have mostly government-funded art institutions across the board compared to many African countries. But what is the point of having rigid and stagnant bodies that have no commitment to genuine transformation?

What is the point of having these government-funded institutions of learning and culture that only out here to spread Swapo propaganda? Again we ask, where is that neo-liberal policy without a plan of action that we were once promised? We cannot expect radical transformation when artistic and cultural praxis is thoroughly left out of important national documents such as the recent National Development and the Harambee Prosperity Plans.

All cultural workers must demand transparency and accountability in this moment of uncertainty and isolation. Bureaucracy and maladministration are man-made, they can be disrupted. Cultural workers must go to the arts and culture offices in your region and ask for the policy and when those plans will be implemented. Tell them it is urgent. Ask for the plan of action. Organize other artists and go there regularly, you deserve to be here.

(Image by Vilho Nuumbala)

‘A Love Letter from Namibia’- Hairareb Movie Comes in 2019

Two strangers who agree to marry each other for mutual benefits. They try make their marriage work while keeping a secret from each that has drastic consequences.

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This is the storyline of ‘Hairareb’ a new movie directed by Oshoveli Shipoh. Funded by the Film Commission of Namibia, the movie is executively produced by Dantagos Jimmy-Melani and Ellen Melani under Ndapunikwa Investments.

tammy 2 copy(Producer and Director)

Set to come out early in 2019, ‘Hairareb’ represents a unique and beautiful portrayal of a truly Namibian story along with an intimate depiction of its culture, while also presenting themes with universal appeal. The story is told in English, through the eyes of one of Namibia’s oldest and most deeply rooted tribes; the Damara/Nama, and hence is an introduction and tribute to the tribe, while incorporating Namibian cinema fit for both local and international audiences.

The cultural aspect is very important to the production team as the production team plans to go to great lengths when researching the film by consulting community elders, in order to stay true to the cultural representation.

The official production schedule will begin in October 2018, while casting will be finalized during September 2018. Currently, the producers are busy with location scouting.

IMG_2919(Executive Producer)

Antonio Tsuob is the Director of Photography while the script is written by Aina Ligola Kwedhi. The Script for ‘Hairareb’ was developed by the Namibia Film Commission, based on a book by August C. Bikeur, which was developed into a script by Aina Ligola Kwedhi. ‘Hairareb’ was also a radio soap opera performed in Khoekhoegowab.

Follow the movie on Facebook for casting information.

‘Salute’: 8 Questions with director Philippe Talavera

Philippe Talavera’s movie ‘Salute’ has been nominated in the Best Movie: Southern Africa category of the 2018 Africa Magic Viewers Choice Award (AMVCA). This is the first nomination the film has received.

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Talavera says ‘Salute’ is for sure very special in the Ombetja Yehinga Organisation (OYO) sphere, as most of the youth organisations’ previous films deal with teenage issues. According to him, they worked for two years in correctional facilities, interacting, listening and learning from inmates. Explaining the success and approval rate of the film, Talavera adds that the film is one of the organisation’s most researched film, to date.

As part of the built-up to the AMVCA, ‘Salute’ will be screened at the Franco-Namibian Cultural Centre (FNCC) on 15 August at 6pm – entrance is N$40. Tickets can be bought at FNCC in advance or on the day, however, there are limited seats.

I sat down with Talavera to get into the detail of his film, among other things:

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Can you name some of OYO’s most successful films?

‘Pap and milk’ has been very successful as many could relate to the main character. ‘Now that I can talk about it’ dealt with the difficult issue of abuse by a family member and won best male actor at the 2014 Namibian Theatre and Film Awards (NTFA) for Dawie Engelbrecht, (also starring in ‘Salute’). ‘Stinky boy’ dealing with children’s rights was also successful and won best female actor at the NTFA 2014 for Anna Louw.

Where did the inspiration for ‘Salute’ come from?

While we worked in correctional facilities, inmates opened up to us and started to share their stories and their experiences. We met quite a few inmates whose story inspired the character of Carlito. Living in a correctional facility is difficult. It is a difficult environment and we tend to forget sometimes that inmates are first and foremost, people. We wanted to tell their stories, to give them a voice. Also as an organization, OYO strongly believes that condoms should be made available in correctional facilities. Regardless of what we think about gay sex, we need to give people a chance to protect themselves. There is no point in hiding behind morals while people get infected with HIV. Inmates don’t spend their whole life behind bars: they get out eventually. What is the point of having people going out with the virus, and further spreading it? We need to be pragmatic. Most inmates are not gay, but there are no women around. So for those who choose to have sex, or are forced to have sex, there should be protection for them.

Who in ‘Salute’ is most like their character/s?

Nobody really. Actors did fantastic work so their characters are believable. ‘The General’ and his ‘Gang’ spent a lot of time with ex-inmates working on their characters while Adriano Visagie, playing Carlito, had to find the right balance between being naïve and fitting into that environment. Odile Muller, who plays Julia, Carlito’s girlfriend, also did a fantastic job.

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How long did the production of ‘Salute’ take?

It took over 18 months of research and writing of the script. The shooting happened over eleven days and the post-production took another six months.

What was the budget for this film? Who funded it?

The budget, excluding the research part, was roughly N$500,000.00. The production of the film was made possible thanks to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund).

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What would it mean if this film wins at the awards?

It would be absolutely amazing. Oftentimes we are not considered for those awards, as our films deal with social issues that are not considered arty enough. This particular film dealing with issues around gay sex, rape and life in correctional facilities is a particularly difficult film. It would be amazing for Namibia and for Africa if the film could win. Those topics are taboo in many parts of Africa, they deal with a sensitive issue in Namibia. It could become an inspiration to many. It would also put Namibia on the map. We have stories to tell. We matter.

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How did you get started in the film industry?

A little by accident to be honest. I come from the theatre and dance environment. I like the stage and its three-dimensionality. However touring a play is expensive: you need a cast and crew, transport, accommodation, logistics, dealing with sick actors, etc. I realized that while producing a DVD is expensive too, once it is done, it is easier to showcase everywhere. With our films, we can reach many more schools than with our plays. That’s why as an organization we moved away from theatre productions and got involved in film productions.

Who are the filmmakers that inspire your work today?

There are so many. I have always been impressed by the creativity of filmmakers such as David Lynch and The Wachowski (Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski) for instance. They manage to create universes that are absolutely amazing.

[Featured] #DragDay: 10 Legendary RuPaul’s Drag Race Lip Syncs!

Hello, Hello, Hello! It’s International Drag Day!

Drag is becoming more and more visible and accepted, and from my POV, mainly by the contribution of RuPaul’s Drag Race, which has snatched 12 nominations for this year’s Emmy Awards.

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Drag Race has already snatched four Emmy wins in the past, with the mastermind behind the show, RuPaul Charles, taking home two consecutive trophies for outstanding host for a reality or reality-competition program.

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Lip syncing in drag is an important, but not limiting, part of the art form that is Drag, which is why I have listed my Top 10 RuPaul’s Drag Race and All Stars lip syncs of all time.

Now, in no particular order, Here is some Drag Race GOLD:

1. Shangela vs. Trixie – Freaky Money

2. Monét X Change vs. Dusty Ray Bottoms – Pound The Alarm

3. Bob The Drag Queen vs Derrick Barry- You Make Me Feel

4. Alyssa Edwards vs Tatianna – Shut Up And Drive

5. Kalorie Karbdashian Williams vs Vanessa Vanjie Mateo – Ain’t No Other Man

6. Vivacious vs Kelly Mantle – Express Yourself

7. BenDeLaCreme vs BeBe Zahara Bennet – Nobody’s Supposed To Be Here

8. Raven VS Jujubee – Dancing On My Own

9. Sasha Velour vs. Shea Couleé  – So Emotional

10. Ginger Minj & Sasha Belle vs Jaidynn Diore Fierce & Tempest DuJour – Think We’re Alone Now

DRAG ON!

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From Theatre To Film: There’s No Stopping Jenny Kandenge

Now, I wouldn’t go as far as to call Jenny Kandenge a Jack of All Trades (that’s scum, leading to bad quality of work) but this writer and director have consistency and determination that one needs to last in the Namibian Film and Theatre Industry.

The award-winning playwright’s talent and determination to excel should serve as motivation to many who want to dig in on the pie that is Namibian entertainment industry. She has staged about 4 theatre plays at UNAM and one at the National Theatre of Namibia assisted in directing the upcoming feature film ‘The White Line’ and recently launched ‘Untitled’, a web series she wrote under the direction of Lavinia Kapewasha.

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Kandenge recently came back from a 6-month long Film Workshop in South Africa (she also wrote and directed a short film there) and Namib Insider had a talk with her on all things theatre, film and all the quirky details that make her unique.

Film

Talk a bit about your experience at the Workshop you attended in SA earlier this year?
It was life-changing, stressful yet exciting. I wouldn’t trade those 6 months for anything because I learned so much about the film industry. The ups and downs made me stronger and the SA hustle taught me that you have to fight for your dreams.

During the workshop, you worked on a short film. What is it about?
It’s a romance film, very different from most of my work but it was a challenge in itself. The film portrays two different sides of a failed relationship, you see the past and present. I always struggle to explain my work but the film is like Blue Valentine.

What is your greatest achievement in the film industry to date?
I started a film last year but my greatest achievement would be ‘Untitled’, the web series which was recently screened under my production company with Lavinia Kapewasha, Dark Crown Productions.

Which particular filmmaker has influenced you the most?
Issa Rae (America) and Mmabatho Montsho (South Africa).

Would you say your filming style is influenced by them?
No, not really. I’d like to believe that I have my own style and that it is still developing.

Do you have any advice for young filmmakers like yourself?
Do the research and find a mentor, I was fortunate enough to have one of the best directors as a mentor in both film and theatre. Don’t be afraid to fail. I’m still learning myself.

Are you working on more film scripts right now?
Yes, I am. I have a little surprise planned for later in the year.

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Theatre

What projects you are currently working on? Which project is going to release first in the coming days?
I have a play coming in October, nothing anytime soon but I’m excited about that one.

What is it about?
It’s a thriller, of course… It’s about revenge, sisters, poison, murder, kidnapping and it has a major twist. That’s all that I’m saying right now.

What are some bad habits that you’ve seen actors develop that you’ve had a hard time dealing with?
Actors thinking that they know everything 🙄 you never stop learning.

Was there ever a show you directed that was miscast? In other words, have you ever regretted casting certain people for certain roles? Or have you been pretty spot on in your casting?
So far I have been pretty spot on in my casting, I would rather spend a month getting the right actor to play a character than just cast the next person. Thank goodness I don’t have any miscasts to date.

Difficult as it is, what is your favourite play?
‘The Nut House’ hands down.

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This ‘n That

On what do you spend the most: clothes, accessories, perfume, underwear, or anything else?
Food and notebooks, I have a weird obsession with buying notebooks.

What movie can you watch over and over without ever getting tired of?
‘500 Days of Summer’ by Marc Webb and ‘Closer’ by Mike Nichols. Yes, I like romance movies, you’d think it a would-be thriller.

What’s wrong but sounds right?
I don’t know, I’m gonna pass that question.

What’s the best/worst practical joke that you’ve played on someone or that was played on you?
When I was on ‘The White Line’ feature film, one particular day, one of the producers called me, being all serious. The entire time I was panicking, thinking I had done something wrong, turned out he was trying to freak me out. I’m yet to get them back for doing that shit to me.

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Who do you go out of your way to be nice to?
No one. I treat people the way they treat me, but generally, I try to be respectful to everyone I meet.

What “old person” things do you do?
I love drinking tea even in the heat. I knit sometimes and I’m very forgetful, the reason why I have so many notebooks and sticky notes to remind me of things I have to do.

Should kidneys be able to be bought and sold?
Aren’t they?

What’s something you really resent paying for?
Contact lenses, glasses, pads and tampons. Like why?!

What was the most unsettling film you’ve seen?
‘Blade Runner’ by Ridley Scott. I had to watch it four times before I completed it. I couldn’t understand it, yet I kept watching.

When was the last time you face palmed?
I do that every day… so today?

Which of your vices or bad habits would be the hardest to give up?
Overthinking, stressing and I have this thing of biting my lips when nervous. This is not a good thing when I have lipstick on…

Where are you not welcome anymore? Why?

I’m welcome everywhere or so I think.

What fashion trend makes you cringe or laugh every time you see it?
I don’t keep track of fashion trends honestly, that’s a full-time job.

So, did you like answering my long list of questions?
They were a lot, but it was fun answering them. They were very random though…

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(Kandenge with ‘Trauma,’ her first novel)

Interview With Filmmaker Florian Schott On The Art Of Filmmaking

The German-born filmmaker living in Namibia since 2009, is popularly known as the Director of the award-winning feature film Katutura (2015) and short film Everything Happens for a Reason (2013).

Schott is currently in preparation to direct a crime series in Germany which will be shot between July and August. Apart from that, Schott is also developing his second feature film; a survival thriller in the desert- and a comedy TV series that he hopes to be able to shoot in Namibia in the next two years.

The Business That Is Film

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Is the film business fair? Particularly, in the Namibian context. How do you make the apparatus work for you?

It’s difficult to talk about fairness in film as it is such a creative business, but still so controlled by the access to money. Privilege definitely plays a role. I had the chance to do unpaid internships on films for over a year before my first paid job, and I know that many people just couldn’t have the opportunity as their financial situation wouldn’t allow for that. For me; working harder, constantly developing, writing has worked so far. People don’t wait to spend money on your film, you have to bring the ideas, the work, the people, then you might get a shot.

How does working within tight restrictions (time, money and talent) force you to be more creative? What have been your lowest (and highest) budget films to date?
Any film comes with restrictions but that’s where your creativity gets challenged the most and sometimes the creative way to deal with a restriction might be the more interesting solution than your original idea. My lowest budgeted film was definitely “Everything Happens for a Reason”, which cost around N$12.000, right now I’m working with the highest budgets I’ve worked with so far.

Do filmmakers have any responsibility to culture? Do you feel that being a creative person requires that you give back or tell a particular story or not do something else?
I think filmmakers should be part of creating a culture. We can tell any story we like but in general, we should try setting an example of a culture and mindset for the future, not the past.

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What was the hardest artistic choice you made as a director, at any stage in production?
That’s a difficult question. As a director you have to make a few hundred choices each day, some harder, some easier, from scripting choices to Cast to locations to every piece of Costume, vehicle, prop, hairstyles, the feel and rhythm of the film, the look, camera angles and movements, sound, music and so many many more. All of these choices combined will create the final film, so I couldn’t single out anyone in particular.

Thoughts on the Namibian film industry? What should be done to further grow the industry?
I feel that we have to try to get a wider range of films made – and then get them out into public view. As our population is quite small we can’t rely on big budgets as these will be hard to get back. We should try to get an infrastructure which allows filmmakers to make more films with a comparatively small budget, telling personal, truly Namibian stories.

What kind of routines do you tend to keep around writing or filmmaking, or do you even have one? How does a typical day (for you) begin?
This really depends on the stage of production. My day writing is completely different from my day developing to my day prepping to my day shooting to my day editing. There is no special routine. Just get the work done. I try to look back at any week and see that I made significant progress with one or more projects. That fuels me for the next week.

Where does an idea for a movie usually begin for you?
Literally anywhere, anytime. I woke up in the morning with an idea to a film before, some come to me while thinking about something else, some might be a mix of other ideas you had before. So there is no system, just me trying to write down every idea I have, and once in a while checking up on my ideas to see which one is ready to grow.

What role have film festivals played in your life so far? Why are they necessary? How do you get the most out of them?
Every year I plan on spending more time on film festivals as it is a great opportunity to build contacts and develop the contacts you have already, work on collaborations. Unfortunately, there is never enough time as so many times my production schedules clashed with the timing of the festivals. But I plan on utilizing them much more in the future.

Is it essential to go to a film institute in order to become a successful filmmaker?
I have never been to a film school so no, I don’t think it’s essential. I quite like a quote by Quentin Tarantino: “I didn’t go to film school, I went to films”. You need to be taught film, but you can choose what the best way is for you. In my youth, I was working in a cinema, watched as many films as I could and read all I could read about it. Nowadays the internet and youtube make learning about the film even easier. An advantage of film school is the contacts you make though, to other filmmakers, to actors, getting equipment, getting something done – much easier than in the ‘real world’. So I think it’s up for everybody to decide for themselves what might work best for them.

In your experience, are Namibian actors easy to give direction? Do they tap into character/emotion easily?
That is not something one can generalize. Every person is different, every actor has a different approach to their craft, every actor has different upbringings and life experiences, no matter where they are from.

Cherlien and Florian Schott at the world premiere of Katutura last week

(Schott and his wife, Cherlien at the premiere of ‘Katutura’)

Does race or gender make any impact on your work?
This is a difficult question. As I am a filmmaker that lives in Namibia but grew up in Europe I do ask myself a lot which stories I can be telling and which maybe require a different voice than mine. I discovered the joy and importance of collaboration. I do for example want to make a film with a strong black female character, but I feel that I need a black female voice for that. So I try to create opportunities for myself to learn, to listen and to grow.

Do you find the process of working with other collaborators difficult or essential (or both)?
The film is a collaboration. For me it’s essential. You can’t do a film alone, it will grow and change and become its own thing only through the hard work of many creative people.

Your top five films?
I don’t really have a top five. There are too many fantastic films, for several different reasons, that this list keeps changing based on where I am in my life and there are many masterpieces in all different genres.

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If you got the opportunity to remake a classic, which one would you go for?
There are so many great stories out there. Why remake a classic if you can create something fresh?

If you got the opportunity to go back in time and change something in any particular movie of yours, then which movie and what changes will you opt for?
On any of my films, there are loads of things I would do differently if I would do them now. But these films and all of these choices I did came from me at that time, so all my films are a reflection of my development.

What was the last great film you saw? What was the last great book you read?
Woah, as I’m close to shooting I am so involved in the stories we are about to tell that it is really difficult to single out a single film or book. There is the joy of watching a really great film or a really great book but it’s always the time after a project that I try to really catch up on watching more and reading more.

WATCH: Everything Happens For A Reason:

Featured: Namibia As Your Next Film Destination

 

Namibia is a gem for those in search of the unexplored and wilderness. This beautiful country has one of the lowest population densities in the world and bizarre desert scenery on Africa’s south-west coast, which has enjoyed more than a decade of stability since achieving Independence on 21 March 1990.

Namibia is a peaceful country which is economically prosperous as a result of its productive mining, fishing, tourism and agricultural industries.

 

COASTAL

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Namibia has four main geographical regions (from West to East): Coastal plain/Namib Desert, Namib Escarpment, the rocky Central Plateau with its high mountains and the Kalahari Sandveld which is characterized by its flat layers of sand. The most spectacular landscapes for filmmakers can be found in the Namib Desert and the surrounding area, films such as “Flight of the Phoenix” and “10.000 BC” were filmed here.

 

DUNES

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Southern Namib – The Sea of Dunes: The Namib Desert stretches along the Atlantic Ocean from Angola well into South Africa and forms a belt of spectacular dunes and rock formations that reaches up to 200 kms inland. South of the Kuiseb River (dry river) lies the Southern Namib, a sea of high, yellow to reddish dunes which stretches for hundreds of kilometers, with no trace of civilization – yet, the port town of Walvis Bay is only approx. 30 kms (18 Miles) away! Your team can conveniently access the dune sea via a good gravel road and an experienced scout.

 

The high impressive dunes in the Southern Namib can be found at Sossusvlei, with spectacular colours, especially at sunrise and sunset when the dunes display a forever changing kaleidoscope of contrasts, from light yellow to dark red.

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Swakopmund and Walvis Bay – Where the Ocean meets the Dunes: Swakopmund is a modern coastal holiday town, with approximately 30 000 inhabitants, nestled between the Namib Desert and the Atlantic Ocean. It is a popular destination for Namibians and foreign visitors alike and has a great number of historic buildings from its German colonial past.

 

COUNTRY ROADS

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Namib Escarpment – Moon Landscapes outside of time and space: This region between the Namib Desert and the Central Plateau is a plain, rugged landscape with strange rock formations and dry river beds, burnt by the glaring sun and deeply dissected. Although relatively easy accessible, the environment is so hostile that no trees or human settlements can be found which gives this region a doomsday atmosphere.

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SAVANNA
Savannah Landscapes – Where the cheetahs thrive Most of Namibia is covered by thorny shrub and tree savanna, which provides a genuine “African” Safari background for your camera. The home of the cheetahs is also the place of many farms and private conservancies with the next neighbors several kilometers away. Private farms are a safe and tranquil environment for any filmmaking endeavor, and a number of them are interesting historic buildings from colonial times that make a great backdrop.

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Green riverbeds and remote villages – The image of rural Africa In the north eastern parts of Namibia (Kavango and Caprivi region) there is more rainfall and hence a more lush, green vegetation with Savannas and Woodlands, containing big trees. The green riverbanks of the Okavango and the Zambezi along the borders with neighboring Angola and Zambia are the tranquil home of crocodiles, hippos, elephants and many bird species. Rural villages can be found all along the rivers where local people still live in the traditional way.

 

LANDSCAPES
The Fish River Canyon in the south of the country is the second largest canyon in the world and a spectacular view similar to the Grand Canyon in the USA.
Windhoek – your gateway to Namibia and the capital city of Namibia, situated in the mountains at 1654 m (5426 ft) above sea level, is a thriving modern city with an excellent infrastructure of European standard.

 

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Windhoek is the commercial hub of the country, almost everything you need is available or can be sourced internationally and delivered within a very short time. Compared to other African cities, Windhoek is relatively small (approx. 220.000 inhabitants) and most of the areas are very neat. The downtown areas are quite safe and the crime rate, compared to Johannesburg and Cape Town, is very low. Windhoek has a number of well preserved buildings and monuments from the colonial past and is a convenient starting point for any endeavor in Namibia.

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Other places of interest Namibia has a kaleidoscope of interesting structures and buildings for any possible location needs, ranging from mines to ship wrecks and desert ghost towns to spectacular mountain passes, light houses and railways. A very special location is Kolmannskoppe, a deserted ghost town in the desert close to Lüderitz, the famous coastal town in the south of Namibia.
Faces of Namibia Namibia is a true “rainbow nation” with a very diverse population of more than ten ethnic groups with different lifestyles, traditions and cultures.
With the cultural and geographical background of Namibians in mind, it is possible to find faces and statues for your cast that could portray inhabitants of most areas on earth.

 

 

SOURCE: Film Commission of Namibia. Visit the NFC for more!

 

 

 

Everything you need to know about Namibia’s new web series, ‘Untitled’

Untitled follows the lives of seven young artists, (writer, model, visual artist, singer, poet, actress and comedian/MC) who are struggling to make it in the ever-changing art scene of Windhoek.

Season 1 of the series, filmed around various locations in Windhoek, follows the individuals as they navigate their way through life and their passion whilst struggling with finding their artistry and support.

In contrast, the web-series tackles the themes of undermined artists, their identity in finding their path and the artistic culture in a developing nation.

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This new web series is suitable for everyone but would be most loved by young adults and those up to 35 years old. The series is self-funded with some financial support from the Namibia Film Commission and created by Dark Brown Productions.

Meet the Director, Writers

Best newcomer actress nominee, Lavinia Kapewasha is the director of the web series. Kapewasha co-wrote the series with award-winning writer, Jenny Kandenge. They decided to put heads together to write the script because they both wanted to get their leg into the film and television world.

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The storyline is derived from their own experiences, those of their peers and friends. According to the two, the show transcends them as they wanted to expose the hard work, diligence, and suffering that artists go through for their craft. This, they say, gave them the passion and zest to tell this story.

Earlier in 2018, Kandenge attended a Youth Film Programme in South Africa. The Namibia Film Commission, and the National Film and Video Foundation of South Africa (NFVF), partnered on this programme to host a six-month mentorship and hands-on-training programme for emerging young filmmakers.

Namib Insider sat down with Kandege and Kapewasha to talk more about the film:

How is this production bringing something new to Namibia’s film industry?

It is the first ever Namibian web series created by young females, with a young cast and crew. We are trying to make Namibian storytellers, especially the young, inspired by how we took storytelling into our own hands. It’s capturing the lives of the characters with a fresh lens, everything was trying to do might not be new, but seeing it from our eye it is fresh and new.

What’s going to surprise people about this series?

The tenacity we tried to convey. We made bold choices in how we told the story, shot the story and how the character and story lives. It makes a statement, so people will be
surprised by the statements made- a little controversy doesn’t hurt.

Let’s talk about inspiration.

Inspiration for the series came mostly from our own struggles as young creatives trying to have a career- there is a lot of undermining of the artist in our country and we wanted to show people what it is like being an artist.

Who in the series is most like their character?

Definitely Fellipus Negodhi.

Who’s the least?

The rest have similarities, but the most different might be Freddy Mazila – who plays Martin and Rodelio Lewis who plays Adrien.

Untitled will officially launch on 2 September 2019 and will be available to stream on YouTube here. Episodes will be updated on a weekly basis.

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Production details:

DIRECTED BY: Lavinia Kapewasha
WRITTEN BY: Lavinia Kapewasha and Jenny Kandenge

Starring:

Freddy Mazila as MARTIN
Chantel Uiras as JOYCE
Rodelio Lewis as ADREIN
Khadija Mouton as BIOLA
Elizabeth Hamurenge as LETI
Fellipus Negodhi as ZION

DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Thabiso Dude and Joseph Teofelus
FIRST ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Jenny Kandenge
SECOND ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Mickeyros Garoes
SOUND DEPARTMENT: Nelson Thindhimbo, Joseph Teofelus and Tina Rosch
LIGHTING DEPARTMENT: Thabiso Dude and Joseph Teofelus
EDITED BY: Thabiso Dube
PRODUCTION MANAGER: Nelson Thindhimbo
PRODUCTION: Lavinia Kapewasha, Jenny Kandenge Ester Beukes

Creating A Showreel & Why It Matters

Your acting reel is your commercial. With it, you are creating a response that encourages the producers/directors to hire you. Having only a headshot to show is not going to cut it. Create your profile and have a showreel. Directors and producers want to see more than just a pretty face.

The ‘I played character X in this and that film/play’ or ‘I directed/edited Y and X’ is also not sufficient. It can mean the difference between booking an industry job or not as it shows how important you are with the industry.

Since you only get one chance to make a first impression, make sure it’s the best you’ve got. I am going to give you three tips to help you make a good reel. Before that, I must stress that as an individual you can’t do everything. You want to give directors/producers a sense of who you are and it is important to have an identity they can look for.

Actors, in particular often try too hard to show they can do everything before they’ve shown they can do something. Be specific.

Remember, your showreel is your resume. These following tips might help in creating the best reel:

1. Best Work Only
Including your best work is crucial to having a great reel. If something is kind of old, out of date or just not as good as your other work then leave it out. Think quality over quantity. Remember bad stuff always sticks in the mind.

2. Make Sure You Feature More Than Your Scene Partner
A reel where the other actor is pulling more attention than you is not good for you, obviously. Don’t give your director/producer any reason to not be focusing on you.

3. Leave Out The Montage
Overall, montages waste time. It should show what you look and sound like on-screen and your acting ability. Cutting straight to the point with your best scene will serve you well.

Here 3 examples of good showreels to give you an idea: