Controversy at Saftas

2012-03-14 00:00

MULTI-AWARD winning director Oliver­ Hermanus added a Golden Horn to his already laden mantlepiece when he picked up the best director prize for Skoonheid­ at the South African Film and Television Awards (Saftas) in Johannesburg­.

The film, which tells the story of a man who is the product of apartheid and feels excluded from the new South Africa, also picked up a best actor award for Deon Lotz, who played the lead role of Francois van Heerden.

The Safta is the latest in a string of awards for Skoonheid, which won the Queer Palm Award at the 2011 Cannes International Film Festival and the best South African film award at the Durban International Film Festival last year.

The best film award went to the South African-Dutch co-production, Black Butterflies, directed by Paula van der Oest, a biopic about South African poet Ingrid Jonker whose brilliant writings were coupled with a fragile emotional and mental state that ultimately led to her death by suicide.

The film also took home prizes for best cinematography (Giulio Biccari), best production design (Darryl Hammer), best music composition (Phillip Miller), best costume design (Rae Donnelly­) and best make up and hair (Raine Nicholette Edwards).

There were also Golden Horns for Desire­ Gardener, who received the award for best supporting actress for her role in Roepman and Patrick Mafokeng, who was named best supporting actor for his role in Master Harold and The Boys.

Other awards went to Timothy Greene, who won best writing for Skeem, Adam Broer and Tanya Hagen who took home the editing prize for Paradise Stop and Simon Ratcliffe who was named best sound designer for Retribution.

The Saftas also honoured three industry veterans with Lifetime Achievement Awards — Athol Fugard for writing and development, Humble Mhlongo for sound and design and Roberta Durrant for her role in the production and development of local television comedy.

On the small screen, the big winner was the SABC1 drama series, Intersexions, which received 11 awards, including best television drama and best director for Rolie Nikiwe.

Two of its actors, Siyabonga Radebe and Lungelo Dladla, were named best actor and best supporting actor in a TV drama respectively, while Ronnie Nyakale (Fallen) took home the best actress­ in a drama prize and Harriet Manamela (Sokhulo & Partners) was named best supporting actress.

In the comedy section Harald Richter took home the prize for best director for Proesstraa t, while the best actor and actress in a comedy show went to Boikie Pholo and Meme Ditshego for Ga Re Dumele.

Stokvel took home the best ensemble prize and Gauteng Maboneng was named best TV comedy.

This year’s best soap was SABC3’s Isidingo, but most soapie fans are crying foul as 7de Laan wasn’t permitted to compete for the award and withdrew it’s two series, Rhythm City and Scandal! from consideration.

7de Laan was told it was ineligible because none of its actors had been put forward for nomination in the acting categories, but’s reasons for withdrawing from the awards ceremony remain a mystery.

M-Net soapie, The Wild, took home prizes for best actor for Tumisho Masha and best direction, and the best soapie actress was Karin van der Laag for Isidingo, which also picked up the best ensemble prize.

In the documentary category, Ryley Grunenwald, who grew up on a farm in Thornville and went to St John’s DSG in Pietermaritzburg, took home the best director and best cinematography prizes­ for Dawn of a New Day.

Her film tells the story of a successful plastic surgeon who leaves his private practice to join a hospital ship offering free surgery to the people of Benin in West Africa.

The best documentary feature was Surfing Soweto, which tells the story of young men and boys who dice with death as they “surf” on trains.

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