By Tongai Mwenje
The one day International workshop, which was co-sponsored by the Hivos Trust, embassies of Netherlands, Denmark and Norway, and partnered by Alpha Media Holdings, Media Center,263Chat among others brought filmmakers, technology and media experts under one roof to discuss ways of utilising the ever growing technology advancement in film production and distribution.
Speaking at a Media Diversity Campaign workshop on Online Film and Television Distribution workshop held on the 4th of December 2013 at Cresta Lodge Hotel in Harare, the founder and chief executive officer of Nigerian mobile application company FansConnectOnline Chike Maduegbuna said: “The movie industry is very big and can become fragmented and bringing stakeholders together brings stability and synergies. There will not be too many associations duplicating the same form of work.”
It is of importance for film industry stakeholders to regularly gather to discuss on ideas on how to effectively use the growing use of technology in the making and distribution of content, He said
In a bid to encourage our local film producers and distributors he emphasised on the need for content production inorder to draw massive local following before seeking international visibility or audience, this he said will make them follow the example of Nigeria¨s popular Nollywood films
.“For Nigeria the storytelling was for our people first, but there is always a tendency to tell the story for others outside. The Nigerian industry grew because the stories were based on the local people’s experiences and that helped them acquire their local audience, which helped build the international audience,” Maduegbuna said.
Kayenyu Kamunyu the chief executive officer of the Able Wireless Company in Kenya provoked stakeholders that they must shift from the talking syndrome to the implementation part of it that enable film producers to get value out of their products and services. Kamunyu is currently working on optimising film content for mobile devices, targeting low and middle income earners in Kenya.
One of Zimbabwe’s renowned film star Stephen Chigorimbo popularly known as John Huni in Studio 263 film acknowledged that the country’s film industry was ready to embrace new production and distribution technological ways
“The opportunity to make money out of films as presented by new media is massive. If we have millions of people on the internet in Zimbabwe who can download a movie for less than they buy in the streets, why would they buy in the streets?” He said
The ex-Studio 263 actor urged those in the film industry to fully understand their roles and value the power of synergies for the procession advancing of the industry
Among the key notable people at the workshop were Patricia Mabviko, Fungai, Machirori, Brenda Matanga of BMatanga Intellectual Property Attorneys ,Carl Joshua Ncube described by CNN African Voices as the ¨New face of Zimbabwean Comedy¨,Zi-FM Stereo chief executive officer Susan Makore, film and theatre producer/director Daves Guzha, playwright and director Raisedon Baya and Culture Fund director Elvas Mari.