This image released by The Weinstein Company shows Idris Elba, as Nelson Mandela, left, and Naomie Harris as Winnie Mandela in a scene from 'Mandela: Long walk to Freedom'. Photo/The Weinstein Company, Keith Bernstein

Johannesburg - South Africans across the country will be able to watch the biopic ‘Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom’ for free on the former president's birthday later this month, Videovision said on Friday.

The film's producer Anant Singh said the company was pleased to collaborate with Ster Kinekor to take the film to audiences around the country.

“We hope that the audience watching the film will be inspired to give back to their communities by following Madiba's example.”

Ster Kinekor CEO Fiaz Mohamed said he hoped many would leave cinemas motivated to serve others and the country more readily.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation was part of plans to celebrate the struggle icon's birthday on July 18 by screening the movie at all Ster Kinekor cinemas across the country at 9.45am.

Members of the public would be admitted on a first-come-first-served basis.

The film is based on Mandela's autobiography.

It stars British actor Idris Elba as Mandela, and British actress Naomie Harris as Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. It also features local actors in the cast, including Tony Kgoroge, Riaad Moosa and Terry Pheto.

Mandela died at his home in Houghton, Johannesburg, on December 5 last year at the age of 95. - Sapa