The Indie Karoo Film Festival in Prince Albert, the Jewel of the Great Karoo
The quaint Karoo town of Prince Albert magnificently celebrated films and filmmaking with its 2nd Indie Karoo Film Festival from June 29 to July 3.
If there’s one thing that makes the Indie Karoo Film Festival 2016 different from other festivals is that it was definitely a home away from home for most visitors, where you do not get drowned in the crowds, but an intimate affair where you made new friends everyday and got to share some great films and chats with renowned actors, filmmakers and writers.
“We aim to become one of the best film festivals in Africa,” said filmmaker Johnny Breedt, and has succeeded admirably.
‘’The IKFF’s long term plan is to be an annual event and this year’s festival is the second year in succession.’’
Founded in 2015, the Indie Karoo Film Festival is the brainchild of Breedt, creating a platform for independent film makers and storytellers producing cutting-edge feature, documentary, experimental and short films, by introducing audiences to some of South Africa’s most exciting emerging talent.
The 5 day festival allowed patrons to rub shoulders and network with not only industry professionals, but also aspiring new film makers.
‘’It’s an important event on the Prince Albert tourism calendar, not only for the town, but for the region as a whole, “said Breedt. ‘’ This event boosts tourism and trade and the spin offs for locals are huge. Last year all of the hospitality establishments were fully booked during the event. The festival also brings much need arts and culture to the region.’’
Showcasing more than 40 feature films, experimental films, short films and documentaries, highlights of the festival included insightful Q & A with director Gavin Hood, who discussed his film Eye in The Sky after its screening, and an informative talk by Koos Roets, whose ‘n Paw Paw vir my Darling will also be showing.
Other guests included filmmaker Jozua Malherbe, who recently directed Wolwedans in die Skemer, award winning actress Rolanda Marais, film actor and poet Gerard Rudolf.
The award for Best Feature film went to Twee Grade Van Moord, the Best Documentary Feature was awarded to The Boers At The End Of the World and Best Short Film was given to I Made A Film You Will Never See.
A Special Mention Award went to Deànré Reiners for his outstanding performances in Verskietende Ster and Mossie ‘Mignon’Van Wyk; and Lida Botha, best known for ‘n Paw Paw vir my Darling, received the Lifetime Achievement Award.
‘’We are fortunate to have The Showroom Theatre as the hub of the festival and this “world class” venue is an integral part of promoting the performing arts giving audiences exposure to quality acts and productions, “says Breedt, a resident of Prince Albert and co-Owner of the Showroom Theatre, a collaborative project created by himself and local businesswoman Charon Landman.
During the festival the Zwartberg High, the Jans Rautenbach Schouwburg and the Sidwell Williams Centre buzzed with action and gave festival goers an opportunity to experience the hospitality of Prince Albert and its residents.
‘’Training and skills transfer are also an important part of the festival,’’ says Breedt, with a scriptwriting workshop presented by The Writing Studio, Bobby Roth’s directing masterclass, as well as editing and grading workshops by LABSPACE running from June 29 to July 3.
The VFX workshop by Anton Kleynscheldt from SAE looked at at the principles you need to understand to be able to produce VFX, and start looking at the most accessible application available today for creating VFX, Adobe’s After Effects.
Apart from the excellent films and workshops on offer, patrons explored, discovered, tasted and enjoy the many attractions that Prince Albert – the Jewel of the Great Karoo, has to offer at Lah-di-Dah, The Swartberg Hotel and African Relish where patrons found True Karoo Hospitality combined with the Creative Energy of the Indie Karoo Film Festival.
The proudly South African Indie Karoo Film Festival was sponsored by Wesgro, Raindog films, Moonlighting, and supported by Advantage Entertainment, The Showroom Theatre, Redflag, The Color Space, and Lahdidah.