ACTORS and actresses who took part in the local movie, Sores of Emmanuel, which was launched last year, have accused producers of the film of exploiting them.
Report by Tinashe Sibanda
The artistes claim that they were not paid for their roles in the film yet they worked very hard for the production, which is one of a few Zimbabwean feature films to be screened in local cinemas.
Sores of Emmanuel ran at various Rainbow Cinemas and got rave reviews from film critics. It re-ran at some of the cinemas due to public demand and was rated as a successful production.
The disgruntled artistes said after the re-run, the film’s writer and director Edmore Ndlovu promised to take the movie to the street to increase income and pay them, but that never happened.
“These filmmakers are all the same. They use people for their own benefit, they are liars and they are actually funded by donors, but they use the capital fund their own businesses. They are the same people killing the industry,” said one actor.
One actress said: “They took us for a ride. We invested our talents and time in the production, but we got nothing. It is very unfair and cruel to treat us this way.”
In response to these claims Ndlovu said most of these actors had volunteered and begged to come on board even for no payment, but now they were acting like they were owed big time.
He said their contracts stated that they would get paid from the net profit.
“The net profit was only after we paid back $7 000 which had been invested by the executive producer.
“He said the returns from the cinemas had paid back the money they had borrowed from other sources to make the film.
“They have never approached me because they know what the contracts state. These people are just struggling to earn money out there and now want to find ways to be relevant through the Press,” said Ndlovu.