Weaam Williams
Local director Weaam Williams’s historical documentary, District Six Rising from the Dust, has been selected to be showcased and possibly be sold to broadcasters at the inaugural Cannes Festival Marchè du Film 2018 this week.

More than 40 South African delegates will attend the Marché du Film, which celebrates the film industry’s biggest annual get-together with a forum of more than 12 000 professionals.

“I feel proud, excited and sentimental. I have never been to Cannes and never been to France.

“It is an opportunity for me to broaden my network, meeting with other festival directors, distributors, sale agents and, potentially, broadcasters,” Williams said.

“It would be great to sell the film, get some leads for my sustainability and that of my company, Tribal Alchemy.

“It’s a possible means of income because when we make films from funding grants, all the money is used on production.”

Williams said she was excited to have the opportunity to share the story of District Six with the world.

“The scale and trauma of forced removals and what it means, that’s what I want the world to know.

“The pain of the forced removals is not spoken about. People always speak of the beauty and nostalgia.”

She said she wanted people to understand the importance of the land.

Williams’s film was selected by the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) to showcase at the market screenings section of the festival.

The NFVF will officially co-host the South African Pavilion with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).

IDC executive for high impact and regions William Smith said: “The IDC has an interest in the development of the South African media and motion pictures industry, and welcomes this partnership as an opportunity to support the creative work done by our South African producers.”

Companies in attendance from Cape Town and the Western Cape include: Big World Cinema, Comart Films, Cape Town Film Studios, Enigma Pictures, Gambit Films, Irish Macleod Inc, Kalahari Film & Media, On Set Film Productions, Spier Films and Urucu Media.

Selected to feature in the prestigious Cannes Official Selection, Un Certain Regard section, is locally co-produced Die Stropers (The Harvesters). Co-produced by Spier Films, the drama takes place in the farming territory of the Free State region.

Wishing attendees from the Cape a successful trip, Wesgro CEO Tim Harris said: “We are immensely proud of our local talent and film companies featuring in the Cannes Film Festival line-up.

“Your presence bears testimony to the fact that Cape Town and the Western Cape is a world-class film production destination.”

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