Working with the Film Resource Unit

My relationship with the Film Resource Unit (FRU) and its dynamic CEO, Mike Dearham, began in 1997 when I was asked to develop their Video Resource Centre Manual. Thereafter I became involved in promoting film from the African continent in a number of ways. I regularly facilitated training workshops for FRU video distributors. I also research, write and design educational media for FRU screening events.

In 1999 I wrote Africa Dreaming, an exploration of love to accompany six short films by African directors on the subject of tough love relationships. This was sponsored by SABC 2 and Prime Media.

In 2001 I wrote, Exploring Xenophobia through “The Foreigner”  to accompany FRU’s screening of Zola Maseko’s film, The Foreigner, at the lauches of all their university film clubs.

In 2001 I also designed and facilitated a course entitled Exploring visual literacy through African film. This was developed to equip high school teachers with skills to use African film as an innovative medium for facilitating discussion groups. It subsequently grew into a four-day film school for Grade 11 and 12 students, piloted at Pimville Library, Soweto.

In 2002 I wrote Mama Africa to accompany six short films by female African directors on the subject of gender discrimination.

In 2002, during the World Summit on Sustainable Development, I worked with FRU at the request of the United Nations Development Programme’s Local Initiative Facility for Urban Environment (LIFE) to facilitate Sustainable Development workshops in the communities of Eldorado Park, Soweto, Sebokeng, Kagiso, Tsakane, Katlehong, Alexandra, Orange Farm, Soshanguve, Mamelodi and Garankuwa.

In 2004 we facilitated a ground-breaking 2-day conference on the potential use of African Film as a form of development communication via the governments Multi Purpose Community Centres - MPCCs). It was called Exploring Possible Futures Through African Film and was supported by the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS). 

In 2005, together with film director, Dan Jarvis, I developed the first African Film Distribution Course. It was facilitated as a FRU pilot project in 2006 in partnership with the Film and Electronic Media Chamber of MAPPP-SETA and offered again in partnership with AFDA. It targeted aspiring film distributors and TV sales agents. Topics covered included the history of African film, an overview of film distribution in South Africa, basic distributor's tools, theatrical release strategies and case studies of recent releases, TV Sales, funding and finance, copyright, festivals and New Media.




 

 

Here is a short sample from Africa Dreaming – an exploration of love (1999):  

 

Here is a short sample from Video Resource Centre Manual (1997):