‘Half-baked’ film attracts brickbats

BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO

ASPIRING filmmaker Charles Nechironga’s new drama series, Shungu Dzemoyo, which recently premiered at Theatre in the Park in Harare, has attracted criticism after the producers allegedly ignored some basic tenets of film-making.

Thespians who attended the premiere highlighted that the drama did not adhere to some of the basic rules governing filmmaking and consequently ended up a “half-baked” project.

Veteran film director, Manuel Matsinye, said it was important for upstarts to first learn the ropes before jumping into the deep-end.

“Aspiring filmmakers must be humble and attach themselves to renowned production houses and take time to learn basic filmmaking before starting their own projects. The writer must strive to create simple story building blocks and ensure it is easily followed,” he said.

“The filmmakers broke so many simple filmmaking rules in all departments; that is, scripting, directing, camera work and editing. The rules were totally disregarded.”

Another filmmaker Billy Kubasa said the premiere helped to alert filmmakers to never bring half-baked products to the public before technical reviews have been done.

“Currently, locals have no confidence as a result of former disappointments. There is need for constant quality products to grow and retain local audience. One bad film can undo the efforts of many filmmakers. We do not expect perfect films yet, but what’s the excuse for not getting the basics like framing,” he said.

Nechironga, who co-founded the Down Rains Entertainment and is the series production manager, said they acknowledged the criticism and would work to smooth out the wrinkles in the project.

“We are not going to give up. We only have a year in the industry. We are going to capitalise on our mistakes as we move forward,” he said.

“Rome was not built in one day and no one was born experienced. I believe that with mentorship from Melgin Tafirenyika of Light Images Production we are definitely going to reach greater heights.”

Nechironga said they had more projects lined up for shooting.

“The greatest challenge we met was that of being newcomers. As newcomers people were not ready to assist financially or technically. They did not believe in us. Shungu Dzemoyo was financed through our own contributions,” he said.

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