Acclaimed African films set for Showmax

By Content Nigeria reporter
December 9, 2022

Ousmane Sembène’s Black Girl

A number of African films that have made ‘best films of all time’ lists, Oscar shortlists and have been nominated for the iEmmys will premiere on video-on-demand service Showmax this month.

Lakutshon’ Ilanga (aka When the Sun Sets) will debut on December 15. Inspired by real events, it tells the story of a young nurse in 1985 apartheid South Africa. She must face her worst fears when she learns that her activist younger brother may be in danger when he doesn’t return after school.

Written and directed by Phumi Morare, Lakutshon’ Ilanga won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Short (Live Action) this year and was shortlisted for the Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film.

Respect, a music biopic about US soul singer Aretha Franklin, will premiere on December 22. Directed by South Africa’s Liesl Tommy, it stars Oscar winners Jennifer Hudson and Forest Whitaker, plus Emmy winner Audra McDonald.

Meanwhile, the third season of the Durban-set adaptation of hit US reality franchise The Real Housewives will be released on Showmax in early 2023. The Real Housewives franchise is licensed as a format by NBCUniversal Formats, a division of Universal Studio Group. The show offers viewers a glimpse into the glamorous lives of wealthy women living in the South African city.

Other movies already airing on Showmax include Ousmane Sembène’s 1966 film Black Girl and Bafta-winning animation The Snail & the Whale, directed by Max Lang and South Africa’s Daniel Snaddon. It was animated in Cape Town by Triggerfish and produced by Magic Light Pictures.

Also on the Showmax slate is M-Net crime series Reyka, which was recently renewed for a second season and won the International Emmy for Best Drama, while Africa & I is a 90-minute documentary that won Best First Feature Documentary at the 2022 Pan African Film and Arts Festival. It was directed by Othmane Zolati and co-directed by Chris Green.

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