FILM PRODUCER ANANT SINGH CONDUCTS FILM MASTERCLASS AT DURBAN BUSINESS FAIR

Anant Singh will be participating in the Durban Business Fair on Saturday, 22 September at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre. Singh will conduct a Master Class entitled “The Business of Film: Balancing Creativity and Economics” from 12h00 to 13h00.

A resident of Durban, Singh is the founder and Chief Executive of Durban-based Videovision Entertainment which is acknowledged as the country’s leading film production and distribution company. Singh began his film career in 1986 with the production of the anti-apartheid film, A Place Of Weeping which starred Gcina Mhlophe. Singh has produced more than 80 feature films, among which are the Academy Award® nominated films: Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom and Yesterday; as well as such notable film as The First Grader; Red Dust; Cry, The Beloved Country; Sarafina! and Shepherds and Butchers. Singh is also the Executive Producer of Imbewu: The Seed, the daily drama shot in Durban which is broadcast on e.tv.

Commenting on his participation in the Durban Business Fair, Singh said, “It gives me great pride to be conducting a Master Class in my home town. I am thrilled to be sharing my experience as a film producer, and the knowledge that I have gained over the last 35 years with budding filmmakers and young entrepreneurs in the film and television industry, especially those who live in Durban. They are our future filmmakers.”

Singh is passionate about developing Durban as a premier film production centre and will be establishing eThekwini Film Studios on the Natal Command site on the Durban Beachfront. The R7.5 billion development will comprise of essential film production facilities which comprises of sound stages and production workshops, television studios for live broadcasts, editing suites, the Walk of Fame, a backlot set area and a museum of South African Cinema.

The Durban Business Fair which celebrates its 20th edition this year, brings exciting topics and speakers who are leaders in their fields, and is designed to inspire and equip entrepreneurs with the appropriate skills to develop their businesses in a sustainable manner.

Admission to the Durban Business Fair is free and open to the public to attend.

Anant Singh on set of Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom

Anant Singh on set of Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom

ANANT SINGH’S MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM MINI-SERIES TO BE BROADCAST ON DSTV’S MZANSI WETHU FOR HERITAGE DAY

Producer, Anant Singh announced today that the four-part MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series will be broadcast on DStv’s Mzansi Wethu (Channel 163) as part of the celebration of Heritage Day. The mini-series will air over two days with Episodes 1 and 2 at 13h30 on 23 September, followed by Episodes 3 and 4 at 13h30 on 24 September. It stars multiple award-winning actor, Idris Elba; award-winning actresses Naomie Harris and Terry Pheto as well as a star-studded cast that includes Tony Kgoroge; Riaad Moosa; Lindiwe Matshikiza; Atandwa Kani; Jamie Bartlett and Deon Lotz.

The MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series is an inspirational story of struggle, sacrifice, hope and triumph, and serves to broaden and deepen knowledge about Madiba and his lifelong commitment to freedom and democracy in South Africa, and complements the Mandela Centenary celebrations which are currently underway in South Africa and around the world.

Anant Singh commented, “Madiba has left an indelible mark on our country. We celebrate his selfless contribution and his centenary. We are delighted to present this special broadcast of the MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series to South African audiences on DStv’s Mzansi Wethu channel as we observe Heritage Day.”

The MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series is an Anant Singh presentation of a Videovision Entertainment production in association with Distant Horizon, Industrial Development Corporation Of South Africa and National Empowerment Fund. The film stars Idris Elba, Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge, Riaad Moosa, Lindiwe Matshikiza, Terry Pheto, Atandwa Kani, Jamie Bartlett, and Deon Lotz. Music is composed by Alex Heffes with Music Contributions from Caiphus Semenya, Blondie Makhene and Dizu Plaatjies. The Co-Producers are Robert Naidoo, Brian Cox, Vlokkie Gordon, Hlengiwe Makhathini and Executive Producers Geoffrey Qhena, Basil Ford, Philisiwe Mthethwa, Sudhir Pragjee and Sanjeev Singh. Produced by Anant Singh, it is based on Nelson Mandela’s Autobiography ‘Long Walk To Freedom’ with the screenplay by William Nicholson and is directed by Justin Chadwick.

SINGH’S “CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED” SCREENS AT OFFICIAL MANDELA DAY EVENT OF SOUTH AFRICAN EMBASSY IN MOSCOW

 Producer, Anant Singh screened the documentary feature, CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED which he produced to commemorate the Mandela Centenary at the official Mandela Day celebrations of the South African Embassy in Moscow hosted by Ambassador, Nomasonto Maria Sibanda-Thusi.  The screening took place  earlier today at the Lotte Hotel in Moscow and was attended by the diplomatic corps based in Moscow, Russian dignitaries and media.

Speaking at the screening, Singh said, “As we celebrate Nelson Mandela’s Centenary, we should reflect on his life and his legacy. A humble leader who readily admitted strengths and weaknesses. A son of Africa and a global giant who inspired his people and the world. To honour him we should all emulate him. We miss him.”

Pictured at the event is Singh presenting the film and historical companion book of the film, MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM to Ambassador Sibanda-Thusi.

VIDEOVISION ENTERTAINMENT’S MANDELA CENTENARY ACTIVITIES STRETCH ACROSS THE GLOBE

Anant Singh and Videovision Entertainment are participating in a host of Mandela Centenary events across the world with activities in Russia, the United States and at home in South Africa.

Singh will present the documentary feature, CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED which he produced to commemorate the Mandela Centenary at the official Mandela Day celebrations of the South African Embassy in Russia hosted by Ambassador, Nomasonto Maria Sibanda-Thusi on 18 July in Moscow.  The event will be attended by local Russian dignitaries, the media community and the international diplomatic corps based in Moscow. Singh is visiting Moscow for the first time since 1989 when he presented his then banned film, THE STICK at the Moscow Film Festival.  The apartheid censors at the time did not want the film exhibited in South Africa, but the Moscow Film Festival honoured the film with its World Premiere.

On Friday, 20 July, Singh will share a platform with Nelson Mandela’s daughter, Dr. Makaziwe Mandela as guest speakers at the Minnesota Orchestra’s ‘Celebrating Mandela 100’ Concert on Friday, 20 July in Minneapolis in the United States.  The Minnesota Orchestra will be touring South Africa with their ‘Celebrating Mandela 100’ Concert from 10 to 18 August, performing in Cape Town, Durban, Pretoria, Soweto and Johannesburg.

Singh’s Videovision Entertainment partnered with the Pearls Mall in Umhlanga, Durban and talented Durban artist and sculptor, Lungelo Gumede to host an exclusive, first-time exhibition of wax sculptures of Nelson Mandela created by Gumede.  The exhibition, which is open free to the public will take place at the Pearls Mall from 13 to 22 July 2018.  To enhance the exhibition, Videovision Entertainment has made available the actual car Mandela was driving when he was arrested in the film, MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM.

Speaking from Moscow, Singh said, “It is an honour to use the content we have created and the various products that we have been involved in, to perpetuate Madiba’s legacy in our country and around the world.  Madiba’s legacy is an inspiration to people all over the world and we all have so much to learn from his exceptional example.”

MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM MINI-SERIES TO COMMEMORATE NELSON MANDELA’S CENTENARY

Producer, Anant Singh announced today that a four x 1-hour mini-series of the film, MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM created to commemorate the Centenary of Nelson Mandela’s birth will be broadcast on DStv’s Mandela 100 Tribute Pop-Up Channel between 18 and 22 July.  Singh also announced the Mandela Documentary Collection produced by himself which include BEYOND LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, COUNTDOWN TO FREEDOM, PRISONERS OF HOPE, A HERO FOR ALL, VIVA MADIBA and the flagship film produced especially for the Mandela Centenary, CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED, will also be broadcast on the Tribute Pop-up Channel over the same period.

The MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series stars multiple award-winning actor, Idris Elba; award-winning actresses Naomie Harris and Terry Pheto; Tony Kgoroge; Riaad Moosa; Lindiwe Matshikiza; Atandwa Kani; Jamie Bartlett and Deon Lotz, and is produced by Singh.

The mini-series tells the Madiba story in a more detailed manner – his childhood ; adapting to life in the big city of Johannesburg; becoming politicized, then incarcerated for almost three decades and ultimately becoming President of a democratic South Africa. The MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM mini-series is an inspirational story of struggle, sacrifice, hope and triumph, and serves to broaden and deepen knowledge about Madiba and his lifelong commitment to freedom and democracy in South Africa, and complements the theme of the Mandela Centenary Commemoration, Be The Legacy.

Commenting on the creation of the mini-series, Singh said, “During the production, we shot an enormous amount of footage that was not used in the feature film due to time limitations, and decided to create the mini-series.  We are very pleased that this enables us to tell the complete Madiba story as it includes scenes of his childhood in the Transkei; being sent to live with the Tembu Regent, Jongintaba; his move to Johannesburg and experiencing the vibrance of Sophiatown and its destruction and his internship with the Johannesburg law firm, Witkin, Sidelsky and Eidelman and many other watershed moments in his life.  We are thrilled to share our vision of a four-part mini-series of Madiba’s journey with South African audiences as we celebrate his 100th birthday.”

Singh’s Mandela Documentary Collection covers the period beginning shortly before South Africa’s first democratic elections to his passing in December 2013:

  • COUNTDOWN TO FREEDOM: This film documents the first free and fair election in South Africa and includes exclusive access to Nelson Mandela as he took the final steps on his walk from prisoner to president.
  • PRISONERS OF HOPE: This documentary charts the reunion on Robben Island of 1 250 of its former political prisoners led by President Mandela.
  • A HERO FOR ALL: The film tracks the activities of President Mandela from the run-up to South Africa’s first democratic elections and throughout his presidency.
  • VIVA MADIBA: This is the story of a rich life, a record of comradeship, and a new glimpse into historical and personal facets of this great man’s rise from an anonymous child to a world icon, restoring our faith in the power of change, and celebrating the man who shaped the destiny of a nation.
  • BEYOND LONG WALK TO FREEDOM: This fascinating five-part series examines the history and issues behind Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk To Freedom through the use of original interviews with Mr. Mandela and the people who knew him well.
  • CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED, produced especially for the Mandela Centenary celebrations, traces Mandela’s life from his roots in the rural village of Mveso, to becoming one of the greatest statesmen the world has ever seen. The film takes us beyond the political and into the personal, and features exclusive interviews with family members, close friends, comrades, politicians and international celebrities, telling us the story of a man who became an international icon.

Singh added, “I am fortunate to have had unprecedented access to events with Madiba after his release from prison, and to record historic events for posterity through the production of these films which remind us of Madiba’s legacy and his selfless leadership.  We are delighted to have partnered with DStv to broadcast them as part of the Mandela Centenary celebrations.”

“This is a very special five-day pop-up channel to honour and celebrate the extraordinary life and legacy of the global icon Nelson Mandela; a man whose life-long commitment to justice and freedom shaped the world. We pride ourselves in only acquiring the very best content and couldn’t have asked for a better line-up. Thank you to world-renowned Videovision Entertainment for their contribution,” says Yolisa Phahle, General Entertainment CEO, MultiChoice.

DStv’s Mandela 100 Tribute Pop-Up Channel can be found at Channel 199 on the DStv bouquet.

SINGH’S MANDELA CENTENARY TRIBUTE FOR DURBAN FILM FESTIVAL

CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED, the documentary feature conceptualised and produced by Anant Singh to commemorate the Nelson Mandela Centenary will be screened at the Durban International Film Festival which will run from 19 to 29 July.  The film was produced with the support and endorsement of the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Anant Singh commented, “I have always been fascinated with Madiba’s lifestory and began communicating with him while he was in prison about making a film about him. Over the years I have made a number of films about Madiba, documenting important events and I felt that it was important to mark his 100th birthday with a special tribute.  CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED is this tribute.  It gives us a glimpse of Madiba’s rich life, traversing the personal and public spheres of his life, giving us a holistic view of the man who was the face of South Africa’s liberation struggle and who became one of the most revered leaders of our time.  Madiba left us a great legacy of selfless leadership and we are delighted to be perpetuating this legacy through this film.  I am delighted to be showcasing CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED at the 39th Durban Film Festival and to share Madiba’s amazing story with the festival audience.”

CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED traces Mandela’s life from his roots in the rural village of Mveso, to becoming one of the greatest statesmen the world has ever seen. The film takes us beyond the political and into the personal, and features exclusive interviews with family members, close friends, comrades, politicians and international celebrities, telling us the story of a man who became an international icon.

Enhanced with authentic re-enactments, CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED features family and friends of Nelson Mandela among whom are his widow, Graca Machel; his late ex-wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela; his daughters Zenani and Zindzi Mandela; fellow Robben Island prisoners, Ahmed Kathrada and Walter Sisulu; ANC President in exile, Oliver Tambo; Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu; former US presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama and a host of global celebrities including Idris Elba, Naomie Harris, Whoopi Goldberg and Blair Underwood.

CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED has been scheduled to screen at the Durban International Film Festival on Friday, 27 July.

FILM PRODUCER ANANT SINGH ANNOUNCES MANDELA CENTENARY INITIATIVES

Following on today’s briefing by Minister Jeff Radebe on the Centenary Celebrations of Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu and the Comprehensive National Programme for the Centenary, film producer Anant Singh outlined a package of films perpetuating the legacy of Madiba and Ma Albertina Sisulu that will be released as part of the Centenary celebrations.

Anant Singh said, “I am honoured to have enjoyed a personal relationship with Madiba, commencing while he was in prison when I asked to make a film about his life.  I have  recorded significant events which have enabled us to produce these films that will support the Centenary celebrations following its theme, ‘Renewing the Mandela legacy and promoting active citizenship in a changing world’.  Our flagship project to celebrate Madiba’s centenary year,  CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED gives us a glimpse into Madiba’s rich and inspirational life.  Madiba left us a great legacy of selfless leadership and we are delighted to be sharing his rich legacy on film with the world as we celebrate his 100th birthday.”

CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED, a documentary feature produced with the Nelson Mandela Foundation.  Enhanced with authentic re-enactments, CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED features family and friends Walter Sisulu, Oliver Tambo, Joe Slovo, Maya Angelou, Bill Clinton and many others.

CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED will have its World Premiere at the Nelson Mandela Foundation on Sunday, 8 July.

In addition, other films that will be released during Mandela Month include:

  • MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM Mini-series:  A four-part mini-series especially created to commemorate the Centenary of Nelson Mandela’s birth, based on the film MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM.
  • BEYOND LONG WALK: This fascinating five part series examines the history and issues behind Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk To Freedom through the use of original interviews with Mr. Mandela and the people who knew him well.
  • COUNTDOWN TO FREEDOM: This film documents the first free and fair election in South Africa and includes exclusive access to Nelson Mandela as he took the final steps on his walk from prisoner to president.  It presents an intimate and independent chronicle of ten days of change in an event of global importance, taking the audience inside President Mandela’s campaign.
  • PRISONERS OF HOPE: This documentary charts the reunion on Robben Island of 1 250 of its former political prisoners led by President Mandela.  This historic event of former prisoners meeting in their place of incarceration features emotional footage of comrades and their fascinating anecdotes as they reminisce their experiences as prisoners on Robben Island.
  • A HERO FOR ALL: The film tracks the activities of President Mandela from the run-up to South Africa’s first democratic elections and throughout his presidency. With unprecedented access to President Mandela, the film examines him as a charismatic figure, an icon and moral force and the excitement of a farewell tour of the United States and covers Mandela’s fanfare visit to New York and the ceremony in Washington where he became the 100th person to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honour, the highest honour of the United States of America.
  • VIVA MADIBA: This is the story of a rich life, a record of comradeship, and a new glimpse into historical and personal facets of this great man’s rise from an anonymous child to a world icon, restoring our faith in the power of change, and celebrating the man who shaped the destiny of a nation.  It is a celebration of an icon, a titan of our times and a giant among men.

Videovision Entertainment has entered into a partnership with DSTV to broadcast these films on their Mandela 100 Tribute Pop-Up Channel between 18 and 22 July 2018 on channel 199.

Nelson Mandela on Robben Island in November 2003 with international and local artists who performed in the 46664 Concert in Cape Town

Statement from Anant Singh & Family on the passing of Mama Winnie

My family and I are saddened and shocked by the sudden passing of Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. She was a remarkable woman who kept the flame of the liberation struggle burning in South Africa while Madiba and his comrades were in prison.  She truly lived up to the title of “Mother of the Nation”.  She endured the brunt of the apartheid regime’s harshness at its worst. Her courage and determination was unwaivering.

I was fortunate to have visited her recently and she was in her sprightly self, and I enjoyed a delightful conversation that spanned the politics of the day and family. She remained a steadfast activist, and an independent thinker who never waived from her principles, and was always committed to the cause of our people.  South Africa has lost a giant.

We are honoured to have had a close relationship, with her being always loving and caring.  We will miss her tremendously.

Our heartfelt condolences go out to Zenani, Zindzi and the entire Mandela Family.

We salute you. We will miss you.

Viva Mama Winnie! Viva !

Vanashree, Anant, Gyana & Kiyan Singh
Durban
2 April 2018

KHALO MATABANE’S PRISON MOVIE, ‘THE NUMBER’ CAPTURES AUDIENCE AT KZN AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL

Khalo Matabane’s latest film, THE NUMBER had its South African premiere as the Closing Night Film of the 14th KZN African Film Festival (KAFF) in Kwa Mashu, Durban on Sunday night where the audience was highly engaged.  The film received a rousing ovation, and a robust Q&A which followed the screening lasted more than 40 minutes.  In attendance were the Producer, Carolyn Carew; Executive Producer, Sanjeev Singh and stars Mothusi Magano, Lwazi Ngubane and a number of supporting actors from KZN.

Commenting after the screening, director Khalo Matabane said, “It’s a special honour to have had THE NUMBER close the KZN African Film Festival, especially as we found incredible talent here and that the KZN audience was the first to see the film. We are encouraged by the positive audience response and look forward to the national release of the film early next year.”

Mothusi Magano who plays the lead character, Magadien said, “I had an amazing time in KwaMashu reuniting with old friends and seeing how the THE NUMBER affects people differently.”

Founder and director of KAFF, Edmund Mhlongo commented, “THE NUMBER is a highly engaging film, superbly acted and without compromise shows what it is like to be in jail under the shadow of gangsterism. It is well researched and the audience emotionally connected to the transformational journey of the lead character which was exceptionally executed. As KAFF we are excited to have screened the film right in the heart of an area where its impact was felt and appreciated. It will no doubt collect my awards along the way.”

The KZN Film Commission’s Simphiwe Ngcobo commented, “THE NUMBER has proven that KwaZulu-Natal is able to support productions of any size, and provide opportunities for local cast and crew. The KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission is proud to be behind the success of THE NUMBER by supporting the film during production, at markets and festivals, as well as audience development initiatives.”

Executive Producer, Sanjeev Singh said, “Sitting in the audience last night, I was amazed at the different, yet positive reactions from the audience. KAFF was a good choice for the South African premiere of THE NUMBER. As a proudly KZN company, we at Videovision Entertainment are delighted to have co-produced the film and to have it filmed on location in the province. This is part of our wider strategy to develop the industry in KZN and provide a platform to profile KZN talent.”

Produced by Born Free Media and Videovision Entertainment, THE NUMBER stars Mothusi Magano in the lead as Magadien, Warren Masemola, Sihle Xaba, Presley Chwenegyagae, Lemogang Tsipa, Kevin Smith, and Deon Lotz.  The internationally acclaimed Terry Pheto and Hakeem Kae-Kazim make guest appearances.  Bringing a strong authenticity to the world of the story, 35 ex-offenders from Kwa Mashu and Wentworth performed in the film and along with the cast, gave incredible performances.

The film is inspired by Jonny Steinberg’s award-winning non-fiction book, ‘The Number’, with its big screen adaptation by Paul Ian Johnson revealing the origins of the fearsome numbers gangs that operate in prisons throughout South Africa.  THE NUMBER is the extraordinary tale of the nigh-impossible redemption of high-ranking Magadien, a Magistrate of the 28’s, one of the notorious Numbers prison gangs.  It charts his journey as a man who finds his humanity –  from being a hardened prisoner, loyal to his gang, to him turning his back on them and the criminal way of life; to choosing his family and building a relationship with his son.  

THE NUMBER will be released in South Africa in early 2018.

Still Image (click caption to download): Seen at the closing of KAFF last night were Carolyn Carew (producer), Simphiwe Ngcobo (KZNFC, head of production), Edmund Mhlongo (director of KAFF), lead actor Mothusi Magano (who plays Magadien) and Sanjeev Singh (executive producer).

THE NUMBER is a Born Free Media presentation in association with Videovision Entertainment, Distant Horizon, The KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission of South Africa, The National Film and Video Foundation of South Africa, The Department of Trade and Industry of South Africa, World Cinema Fund, Gebrueber Beetz Filmproduktion, Tiktak Productions,  Agenc Film Reunion and The Gauteng Film Commission.  The film stars Mothusi Magano, Kevin Smith, Lemogang Tsipa, Warren Masemola, Deon Lotz, Presley Chweneyagae and Charlton George.  It is Edited by Megan Gill, Ronelle Loots and Nick Costaras with Music by Philip Miller, Production Design by Willie Botha and Costume Design by Ruy Filipe.  Casting Directors are Moonyeenn Lee and Khalo Matabane and the Director of Photography Dewald Aukema.  It is Executive Produced by Anant Singh, Robert Naidoo, Sanjeev Singh, Tsholo Mashile and Produced by Carolyn Carew and Khalo Matabane.  THE NUMBER is based on the book by Jonny Steinberg with the screenplay by Paul Ian Johnson and is directed by Khalo Matabane.

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