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South African Drama 'Otelo Burning' Gets U.S. Digital Release Via Sundance Institute’s Artist Services Program

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by Natasha Greeves
December 11, 2013 2:36 PM
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An S&A highlight of 2012, award-winning filmmaker Sara Blecher's "City of God meets Blue Crush" South African coming-of-age drama Otelo Burning - a gripping story of township kids as they discover surfing, set in late 1980s, against the backdrop of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison - makes its digital premiere on January 14, 2014 on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox, Sony Entertainment Network, SundanceNOW, VUDU and YouTube

The film is available for pre-order through Sundance Institute’s Now Playing page.

After capturing 17 International Awards, the film enjoyed a limited theatrical run, starting at New York’s new cinemas at MIST Harlem - an affair that was attended by the filmmaker, and one of the stars of the film, Sihle Xaba.

Now many more of you will be able to see it.

Filmed on location in Durban, written by Sara Blecher, James Whyle and The Cast Workshop, and directed by Blecher (Surfing Soweto), Otelo Burning stars some familiar South African actors whose names have been mentioned once or twice on this site, attached to previous films, like Kenneth Nkosi, who also starred in Paradise Stop and White Wedding (South Africa's entry in the 2009 Oscars in the foreign film category).

The cast includes Jafta Mamabolo, Thomas Gumede, Sihle Xaba, Tshepang Mohlomi, and Nolwazi Shange.

The film arrives following acclaimed screenings at such prestigious film festivals at the BFI London International Film Festival and the Busan International Festival in Korea. At the Durban International Film Festival, it was chosen as the Opening Night selection, and at the Seattle International Film Festival, it was nominated for the Golden Needle Award.

It was further honored at the 2012 African Movie Academy Awards, where it won 2 of 13 total nominations, including the prize for Best Cinematography and Best Child Actor (Tshepang Mohlomi).

It also won the Golden Owl Audience Award for Best Film at Cinerama BC Brazil and Best South African Film at the Cape Winelands Film Festival.

Vanessa reviewed the film very positively HERE.

Trailer below:

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