A Zimbabwean Film 'Come Sunrise We Shall Rule' Directed By Nyasha Kadandara Awarded At 2021 Durban FilmMart

After initial postponements due to civil unrest and protests in some South African provinces last July, the 12th edition of Africa’s premier film industry event, Durban FilmMart was finally held virtually from 13 to 22 August 2021 under the theme, 'Disrupt! The shape of stories to come.' 

“As a key entry point for both creatives and business professionals, the DFM is a pan-African platform that connects our industry to the world.  The 2021 edition will harness the energy of the times, in which online networking, financing, cloud-based workflows and disruption of the distribution eco-system have the potential to democratize access across the film value chain.” explained Magdalene Reddy, acting General Manager of the Durban FilmMart Institute.

The event hosted 1221 delegates from 73 countries around the world through sessions presented in English with French, Portuguese and sign language translations. After 10 days of virtual panel discussions, workshops, presentations, pitches and meetings the 12th Durban FilmMart culminated with the announcement of the 2021 Official Awards for Projects on Sunday, 22 August.

66 African filmmakers presented pitches to financiers, investors, sales agents, and international markets. The list included Zimbabwean independent filmmaker, Nyasha Kadandara, along with her team of Kenya based film producers Bramwel Iro and Sue-Ellen Chitunya. They pitched a project titled Come Sunrise We Shall Rule. A film about disempowered but ambitious teenage girl living in colonial Zimbabwe desperate to contribute to her country’s liberation. But, from the moment she became an informant for the resistance, she quickly realized the regime is not her only enemy. 

"We are in the process of fundraising, building a crew and cast for the film. We hope to start shooting in 2023." Says Nyasha Kadandara who is the film's director. "This film is still in development. Durban FilmMart was actually the first time our team introduced the project to the market, that is, telling people in the industry that we are planning to make this film." she continues.

Come Sunrise We Shall Rule was awarded the OIF - Clap ACP Prize by the OIF ACP Organization and the EU at the Durban FilmMart  event. "We are really excited to receive this award. We also received critical feedback from the people we met during Durban FilmMart." Says Kadandara. 

Come Sunrise We Shall Rule filmmakers will receive mentorship including project diagnostic and assisted with re-writing (or audit of all application documents if the script needs no rewriting). They will also receive 18 months exposure and promotion towards coproducers/distributors. 

"As the press statement reads, our award entails receiving script consultation and production strategy assistance. This kind of support will go a long way in helping us solidify a final version of the script which we will film. It will also help us strategize and execute the film." Says Kadandara. "Independent filmmaking is not easy so, we are really pleased with the reception at Durban FilmMart 2021 and excited about the journey ahead." she continued.

CLAP ACP is an initiative by the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF) Film Fund that aims to strengthen the cinematographic and audiovisual sector of African, Caribbean and Pacific States by awarding grants for the development of feature films, documentaries and series. It is funded by the European Union (EU)

Mungwadzi Godwin

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