Second: Another South African film and filmmaker - Jahmil X.T. Qubeka's Of Good Report, certainly didn't hurt after all the controversy following its banning at Durban in July. On the contrary, it seemed to actually help raise the film's profile in the international film marketplace. And I'm sure the film's strengths also were of some influence.
It's been picked up by sales agent 6 Sales ahead of its international premiere at Toronto.
The company will act as sales agent for the film, which first screens at TIFF tomorrow, September 6.
By the way it's film festival fortunes continue, as it has also been selected for the Official Competition of the London Film Festival, which runs next month.
Following the refusal to classify the film, citing that it "promotes child abuse & pornography," the South African Film and Publications Board reversed their decision and gave the film the US equivalent of an R-rating.
Durban Festival manager Peter Machen awarded it for Artistic Bravery.
Described as an homage to classic film noir, Of Good Report tells the story of a demented school teacher's attempts to get away with the brutal murder of a teenage beauty queen.
The filmmaker calls it a "serial killer origins story about how a social misfit turns into an inadequate man hell-bent on satisfying his shameful lust. It is Little Red Riding Hood, told from the wolf’s perspective."
TIFF, where it'll screen next, says Of Good Report is "superbly filmed in black and white," and that it "takes us well out of our comfort zones with the boldness of an artistic and political maverick. Audiences should be forewarned: the film's depictions of Sithole's crimes and their aftermath is heavy viewing that may disturb even seasoned cinema-goers, and is bound to jolt and to challenge usually complacent representations of South African — and universal — morality."
Mothusi Magano stars in the film, along with Petronella Tshuma.
It's produced by Mike Auret and Luzuko Dilima (Spier Films).
It's out in theaters in South Africa; let's hope it makes it to the USA soon.
Here' the first full trailer for the film (promo poster underneath):