More than 3 300 films submitted for the 2023 Durban International Film Festival

A scene from ‘1960’, the opening film at the 43th Durban International Film Festival. Picture: Supplied

A scene from ‘1960’, the opening film at the 43th Durban International Film Festival. Picture: Supplied

Published Mar 9, 2023


The Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) has received an impressive 3 316 films from 137 countries for submission into this year’s edition, leaving the programming team with quite the task.

The 44th festival, presented by the Centre for Creative Arts at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, is set to run from July 20-30.

Festival manager Andrea Voges and 15 other programmers have their work cut out as they decide which films will make it through to be screened at the leading film festival on the African continent.

Voges, who has previously worked at a number of festivals, said that this year’s programme would showcase the works of filmmakers who “placed their imaginations, voices, creativity and lenses at the centre of creating films that inspire, confront, challenge and provoke audiences”.

“The programming team will look out for innovative storytelling that will connect storytellers with audiences.”

The teams for features, documentaries, short and student films come from around the world, including the US, China, India, Brazil, Nigeria and Serbia.

The shorts programming team comprises the founder of Alfreda's Cinema, Melissa Lyde (US), curator, filmmaker and historian Greta Morton (Australia), filmmaker, visual artist, and film festival programmer Yanyu Dong (China), and curator, cultural programmer and producer Mitchell Harper (South Africa).

While the documentary programmers are film director and curator Ygor Gama (Argentina/Brazil), line producer and programme co-ordinator Egar Ntanyi (Nigeria), and film director, producer and director of photography Inadelso Cossa (Mozambique).

Writer and director Indranil Banerjee (India), curator, producer, director and broadcaster Andrea Cals (Brazil), seasoned festival programmer and distributor Safa Morad (Egypt) and film critic, programmer and journalist Tara Karajicoa (Serbia) will make up the programming team for the features category.

The second edition of DIFF’s Isiphethu Student Film Festival will also take place and will be headed by Sakhile Gumede.

Gumede’s programming team consists of writer and director Madoda Ncayiyana (South Africa), cultural producer and editor Ashok Vish (India) and festival manager and programmer Ibee Ndaw (Gambia/France).

The 10-day festival will present live screenings at CineCentre, Suncoast. Additional venues will be announced closer to the festival opening date.