The WFOZ team comprising of Tsitsi Dangarembga, founder of IIFF and director of ICAPA, Laura Ganda, IIFF director, and Angeline Madyara attended the DISCOP Film- and TV Market at the Sandton Convention Center, South Africa.
What do you get when you put filmmakers and distributors together? A mixture of engaging and exciting films from across the Globe! This was the scene at DISCOP, Africa's biggest Film and TV Market held from the 2nd to the 4th of November 2016 in Johannesburg South Africa. The film market is run by USA based organisation Basic Lead annually and holds two of these markets in Africa, one in Abidjan Cote D'Ivoire and the other one in Johannesburg South Africa.
DISCOP in South Africa was a great opportunity for our organisation to explore the opportunities available for IIFF and WFOZ at the market in terms of production and the festival. Several meetings were held with buyers, sellers, distributors and producers for African content and also from the international film scene. Progressive meetings were held with some being very relevant to the festival, and others presenting opportunities for links and partnerships in other strategic areas of our work.
Day two was exciting as it had the DISCOP pitching competition for TV shows in different categories namely Animation, TV series, Formats and Documentaries. Tsitsi Dangarembga’s submission Ms Rythmix in the TV series category had made it first to the semi-finals with six projects allowed to make a two minute pitch to the international jury. Ms Rythmix made it to the finals, with three finalists with an eight minute pitch each from which the winner and runner up would be chosen. All the three finalist had exciting series to present and the audience enjoyed the pitches which was a sure sign that the judges would have a difficult time choosing the best. Ms Rhythmix won the runner up with the grand prize being taken by Chineke Unze from Nigeria. This was a big win for WFOZ and it presented a great opportunity for the series to attract producers and funders.
A meeting with women from South African Women in Film and Television (SWIFT), Zoe Chiriseri and Sarah Blecher then brought about fruitful ideas for the development of women in film in the future. Thus was the ending of DISCOP 2016! Great opportunities for distribution of Zimbabwean content are present at such events but the first thing that must happen in the local film industry is good productions that can attract the interest of content buyers. Also identified were partnerships for possible co-productions with South African filmmakers.