Having been reduced to 27 screens from 47, the popular local rom-com ‘Tell Me Sweet Something’ has irked the producers and actors.
As a result the national department of arts and culture has come to the defense.
Reportedly, in its five days of release nationally it made a gross of R1million but it seems the distributors are having none of it.
Over the weekend, the producer of the local film Akin Omotoso went ballistic when he was made aware of the decision.
A lengthy statement released by the Department of Arts and Culture states that Minister Nathi Mthethwa has noted the decision and has called for a meeting with stakeholders in the film industry.
“Exhibitors need to come to the party and play their part in sustaining the promotion of South African films to South African audiences. It is not enough to simply hold the profit motive aloft while the South African story is not allowed to sustain its presence and capture the imagination of our audiences,” Minister Mthethwa said in the statement.
“We need to sustain local content in the market. Exhibitors have a role to play in forming part of a value chain that increases local content. Exhibiting and distribution are key to attaining this national mandate.”
“Therefore I am calling a meeting of film stakeholders where we can thrash out issues of distribution, representation, marketing support and other pressing issues affecting filmmakers. All stakeholders must contribute to the strengthening of the industry. This is crucial as part of the transformation agenda of the industry and at a time when we are seized with the review of the White Paper on Arts, Culture and Heritage.”
Although some blamed the producers and actors to go out and aggressively market local films, some believe the likes of National Film and Video Foundation has to help to market such films.
The foundation was not available for comment at the time of publishing.
White films receive the attention it deserves says others.
‘Tell Me Sweet Something’ stars Maps Maponyane and Nomzamo Mbatha.
It is still on rotation but at selected cinemas as a result of the reduction.