BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO
LOCAL film lovers were left disappointed on Monday after award-winning film Kushata KweMoyo, a Mirazvo Production, failed to premier on DStv’s M-Net Movies Afro-Cinema, a pop-up movie channel.
Afro-Cinema was launched on DStv’s Channel 198 last week and it will be available to DStv customers on access to premium packages across the continent until May 30, to showcase and celebrate contemporary African film.
The film, Kushata KweMoyo, based on a woman called Chiedza, who was abused as a child by her stepmother and grew up to be a bitter woman who hated her family, failed to be premiered.
Instead, a Kenyan production Lost In Time was screened.
Several film lovers who were glued to the small screen told NewsDay Life & Style that they were disappointed to see a different film showing.
Film director Shem Zemura took to social media to apologise saying the disappointment was a result of technical problems.
“There has been a technical issue on MNet Movie channel 198. Kushata KweMoyo will not be showing tonight. We are still waiting to get a full report from Multichoice. Rain Media and the Kushata KweMoyo team were very sorry for the inconvenience. Thank you so much for your tremendous support,” he said.
In a follow-up interview, Zemura told NewsDay Life & Style that he was informed that the film took longer than expected to load in line with MNet’s broadcasting standards.
“These things happen. The film reportedly took longer to process and convert into their broadcasting specification standards.
“It was just unfortunate that people have been patiently waiting to watch the movie for two or three years now,” he said.
“We thought they had forgotten about it but apparently from the response we got from our social media platforms, people were angry that it didn’t screen last night (Monday).
“This morning (yesterday) people were asking when they can watch it and I am still to get a response from MNet with a definite schedule.”
He added: “I hope that MNet will, starting from this week, not talk about African cinema without mentioning Zimbabwe. They cannot continue to ignore us.
“I also hope that it will evaluate its policies and strategy and start acquiring films from Zimbabwe on a permanent basis. This was just one week but we want our films in our home of southern Africa Zambezi Magic.”
The film’s scriptwriter Amanda Ranganawa said she was excited that the film had been selected for screening on such a prestigious platform.
“This is a great opportunity for all of us and Kushata KweMoyo cast and crew.
“It is also a great opportunity for people across the African continent to see the Zimbabwean film industry glow and for the rest of the world to see how talented Zimbabwe is,” she said.
MultiChoice Zimbabwe spokesperson Liz Dziva said the screening of the film would be rescheduled.
“The film (Kushata KweMoyo) file had to be reprocessed to manage certain technical requirements and unfortunately was not completed in time for yesterday’s (Monday) broadcast, this is out of our control,” she said.
“However, we are excited to say that this has been resolved and Kushata KweMoyo will be rescheduled. We would like to reassure you our valued customers in Zimbabwe that we continue to aim to bring the best local content and offer a consistent customer experience through quality broadcasting.”
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