One of Zimbabwe’s latest feature films, The Gentleman, has broken new ground by being nominated for two awards at the American Film Festival.
The movie entered the awards in the category of best foreign language film and was nominated for the best director and best cinematography awards.
Speaking in an interview with NewsDay, Rufaro Kaseke, producer and cinematographer of the movie, said they were excited about the nominations.
“This is a positive step for Zimbabwean film and a breakthrough for our industry. We have been dying to get recognition from the outside and this is really exciting for us,” said Kaseke.
“It will open a lot of synergies for the Zimbabwean film industry as we stand chances of getting co-production deals with other markets which will give us a lot of exposure.”
He said the movie had been nominated together with five other African films.
The Gentleman stars former Big Brother Africa finalist Munyaradzi Chidzonga aka the Diamond Boy, Presley Chweneyagae from South Africa, popular for his lead role in the movie Tsotsi, Elijah Madzikatire, businessman Philip Chiyangwa and a number of upcoming stars.
The movie recently opened at Rainbow Cinemas in Harare and Bulawayo.
One of the executive producers, Sylvia Chimhina, based in the United States, facilitated the film’s entry into the awards.
The film premieres in Blantyre, Malawi on November 25 where they have secured partnerships with MultiChoice Malawi and other business people for sponsorship.
Locally they have partnered with Tsitsi Dangarembga’s International Images Film Festival for women, which is currently underway.
The Gentleman will be screened on November 23 at The Mannenberg in a new category for male film makers called the New Man.
The film was Zimbabwe’s representative at the just-ended African Film Expo in Johannesburg where it was dubbed “Africa’s next block buster” by Screen Africa magazine.
Batsirai Masvinge, the film’s publicist, expressed delight at the developments and said this was new era for Zimbabwean film industry.
“The industry has for far too long been a sleeping giant and it’s good that we are heading in the right direction. It is a good development that we are heading in the right direction,” said Masvinge.