Film set to positively position South Africa at the Dubai Expo 2020

08 October 2021: The National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) will showcase the crème de la crème of South African films at the Dubai Expo 2020, as part of the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture (DSAC)’s contribution of South Africa’s participation in the World Expo. This comes after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) graciously invited South Africa, alongside 190 other countries, to participate in the expo which began on the 1st of October 2021 and will run until the 31st of March 2022.

Dubai Expo 2020 is part of the World Expos, organised by the Bureau of International Exhibitions (BIE) every 5 years since 1931. The DSAC which works towards ensuring equitable access, development and harnesses the socio economic contributions in the country has put together a combination of segments of Sport, Arts and Culture programmes at the Dubai Expo which include:

  • Creative Exhibition (in the form of Craft, Visual Arts and Design)
  • Film Festival
  • Performing Arts
  • Cultural Heritage
  • Sports Tourism

Among the other agencies participating alongside the NFVF are Proudly SA, Brand South Africa,  the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition and South African private sector leaders i.e.Multichoice.

The NFVF, an agency of the DSAC, is the custodian of the SA film sector and will be managing South Africa’s involvement in the Dubai Film Festival. This kicked off with the launch of South Africa’s film week on Sunday the 3rd of October 2021. Hosted by NFVF CEO Makhosazana Khanyile, guests were  treated to the screenings of the award winning animation short, Belly Flop, produced by Anthony Silverton and directed by Jeremy Collins and Kelly Dillion and the animated short film Shaka, Inkosi Yamakhosi, produced by Terry Pheto, Ayanda Borotho and Amanda Zungu and directed by Manzini Zungu. The NFVF also showcased an audio-visual spectacle of the opportunities that lie in SA film through agencies such as the KZN Film Commission, Wesgro, the Gauteng Film Commission as well as well as the ECDC in the Eastern Cape. 

South Africa’s film festival will showcase remarkable South African films, including features  (Poppie Nongema) and shorts (Blue Dress), documentaries (Bhudda in Africa) and animation with the sole purpose of strengthening the positioning of the South African audio-visual industry in the UAE. In addition, the NFVF CEO, as she does with all international travel, will meet with key industry players in the space of film looking for collaboration opportunities.

The feature film Long Walk To Freedom, about global South African icon Nelson Mandela, produced by Sanjeev Singh and directed by Justin Chadwick, will also be screened to local film school students at the SA Pavillion. 

Thereafter, remarkable South African films will be screened every Tuesday and Thursday including the feature Fiela se Kind, produced by Danie Bester and directed by Brett Michael Innes; the documentary Skull of My People produced by Vincent Moloi, Magano Mamabolo & Lodi Matsotela and directed by Moloi and the short film The Letter Reader produced by Dumi Gumbi & Catharina Weiner and directed by Sibusiso Khuzwayo.

“With more than 20 South African films on the list, we are thrilled to share our rich heritage and multi-cultural treasure with the world,” said Makhosazana Khanyile. “We are confident in our country’s ability as a global contender in the audio-visual industry and look forward to fostering new relationships as we seek to strengthen our sector, given the effects of Covid-19,  and position it beyond the borders of South Africa.”


For further information:

Lerato Mokopanele

Acting Marketing & Communications Manager

National Film and Video Foundation

About NFVF

The National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) is an agency of the Department of Sport, Arts and culture was created to ensure the equitable growth of South Africa’s film and video industry. The NFVF does this by providing funding for the development, production, marketing, and distribution of films and also the training and development of filmmakers. In addition, the NFVF commissions research and produces industry statistics that provide both the public and stakeholders with valuable insights into the South African film industry.


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