Film industry needs adequate funding for its growth: Ngwabi

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BY TENDAI SAUTA
AWARD-WINNING local film director Mzingaye Ngwabi has urged government and the corporate sector to adequately fund the film industry so that it realises its full potential.

The local film industry has for long been in the intensive care with others saying it is “clinically” dead.

In a recent interview with NewsDay Life & Style, Ngwabi said capacitation and availing relevant sustainable technologies will help towards improving the state of the country’s film industry.

“Lack of resources remains a stumbling block to many up-and-coming producers as well as aspiring filmmakers.

“On several occasions I face shortage of equipment and resources to produce films such that I resort to partner with people who have shooting and recording equipment,” he said.

“It is effective, but sometimes slow since I have to wait especially when they are busy with their productions for paying customers.”

Ngwabi said it took him a long time to win the country’s prestigious National Arts Merit Award (Nama) he won a fortnight ago due to lack of resources, adding that he carried his dream since teenagehood.

“My Nama award-winning film The Hood came to success through partnership and support from Pride Mujoli’s Yellow, Film and TV Resources and Young Artists Development School who provided actors and crew,” he said.

The Hood story follows a young man who dreams of becoming a great actor so that he can assist his community and take care of his family.

“He, however, faces obstacles along the way such as poverty, discrimination, drug abuse among other things, but the story ends with the young man achieving his goals.”

Ngwabi said he was optimistic that a lot of doors would be opened after winning the award.

“I and the people that I worked with on the film now have living proof that we are good at what we do. This, therefore, makes it easy to approach potential sponsors since we have concrete proof that we know what we are doing,” he said.

Ngwabi said the arts should be fully incorporated into the mainstream economy through meaningful engagement with the corporate world.

“We shall continue to work hard as young people and knock on the big offices’ doors for the much-needed support.

“Please keep those doors open for us. I urge all filmmakers to continue producing content that will lift the Zimbabwean film industry high,” he said.

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