Film & Cinematography News South Africa

Sarafina! creators clinch deal with French media giant

Following the screening of Sarafina! in the Cannes Classics Official Selection, producer Anant Singh announced that French media and entertainment giant, TF1 Studio/ Newen Studios will represent Sarafina! for international sales.
Leleti Khumalo and Anant Singh at the Cannes Film Festival. Source: Supplied.
Leleti Khumalo and Anant Singh at the Cannes Film Festival. Source: Supplied.

Continued relationship

The film is produced by Singh, directed by Darrel James Roodt and stars Academy Award Winner, Whoopi Goldberg; Leleti Khumalo; Miriam Makeba; Mbongeni Ngema; John Kani and Somizi Mhlongo; with the screenplay by Mbongeni Ngema and William Nicholson.

Commenting on the deal, Singh said, “It is great to continue the relationship which began through our 1992 partnership with Les Films Ariane which is now part of TF1 Studio, a Newen Studios subsidiary, with the film now being distributed by Newen Connect. Today, there are many opportunities to release the film including in IMAX, and also with students and schools, which gives us access to a whole new generation of audiences.

TF1/Newen Studios are equally passionate about the film, and we look forward to working with them on theatrical and other media, and to generating revenue and viewership across the territories of the world.”

New audience

Nathalie Toulza-Madar, TF1 Studio CEO, added, “TF1 Studio is proud and honoured to partner with Vision Entertainment to distribute Sarafina! around the world. The outstanding beauty of the film and the values it promotes will enchant new audiences, especially young ones. The glorious return of this great film to Cannes is the beginning of a wonderful adventure. The expertise of Newen Connect's distribution team will be a precious asset to accompany buyers all over the world.”

Producer Anant Singh and lead actress Leleti Khumalo attended the Cannes Classics screening last week and were accompanied by South Africa’s Deputy Ambassador to France, Minister Plenipotentiary Nthabiseng Makuwa. The film received a five-minute standing ovation.

Anant Singh said, “It was wonderful presenting Sarafina! together with Leleti in Cannes 31 years after its first screening. The audience included people who were at the screening in 1992, but I was delighted by the reaction of people who saw the film for the first time and were visibly moved. It’s a testament to our film, and the many creative partnerships involved, that it engages a younger audience three decades later.”

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