Africa film: top award for SA actress

2011-06-27 00:00

SOUTH African actress Denise Newman won the award for the best actress at the eighth African Film Festival of Tarifa (FCAT) in Spain for her role in Oliver Hermanus’s compelling drama Shirley Adams.

Mane Cisneros, director of FCAT , said of the decision to present Newman with the award, “Denise Newman is believable in her complex, sober and sombre portrayal of the film character. With her construction of the character she was able to access the most essential core of humanity.”

Shirley Adams tells the story of a Mitchell’s Plein woman who spends her days taking care of her disabled son Donovan, who was shot by a stray bullet in crossfire between two gangs. With no means of support, Shirley finds herself forced to survive on handouts and by occasional shoplifting in the supermarket.

Another South African film, Khalo Matabane’s State of Violence, received a special mention from the jury for showing how peace can be achieved only through forgiveness and reconciliation.

Shirley Adams and State of Violence were two of the four SA films entered in the FCAT competition this year. The others were the documentaries Surfing Soweto and The Killing of the Imam.

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