SASFED and Netflix collaborate on a Covid-19 relief fund to help SA’s creative community

Pearl Thusi (PHOTO: Gallo Images)
Pearl Thusi (PHOTO: Gallo Images)

The coronavirus pandemic has devastated creative communities all around the world, including South Africa, and left thousands of workers without an income.

The South African Screen Federation (SASFED), supported by the Independent Producers Organisation (IPO), has announced the establishment of a Covid-19 film and television relief fund in collaboration with Netflix.

Netflix will donate over R8,3 million, which will be administered by Tshikululu Social Investment, who will screen the applications for eligibility as well as disburse the funds to beneficiaries.

“We’re proud to be working with the South African Screen Federation and the Independent Producers Organisation to support the hardest hit workers in TV and film production. South African crews are vital to Netflix’s success and we want to help those freelancers who most need support in these unprecedented times,” says Dorothy Ghettuba, who leads African Originals for Netflix. 

Read more | The National Arts Festival goes completely digital as Covid-19 continues to restrict arts industry

Here are some locally made Neflix originals: 

Shadow (2019)

Haunted by a tragic loss, an ex-cop with a rare inability to feel pain strikes out on his own to catch offenders who've eluded Johannesburg police. Shadow was Netflix's first acquired South African original series. The show only has one season available for streaming.

Queen Sono (2020)

The action-packed series depicts Queen Sono, the highly trained top spy in a South African agency whose purpose is to protect and better the lives of African citizens. The six-part series was the first original series in Africa. On the 28th of April, Netflix announced that it had been renewed for a second season. 

Read more | Black women in film: Chi Mhende talks to us about what representation means in the African context

Blood & Water (2020)

Blood & Water follows the exploits of the intelligent, proactive and impulsive 16-year-old Puleng Khumalo. After crossing paths at a party, the Cape Town teen sets out to prove whether a private-school swimming star is her sister who was abducted at birth.

This was the second proudly African Netflix Original series. It premiered on the platform on 20 May 2020. The series was renewed for a second season. In June, it reached the Top 10 chart across the globe after only being released for a month, and it hit #2 in Brazil and Mauritius, peaking #1 in France, Trinidad and Tobago.

Seriously Single (2020)

Neflix brings the next captivating South African rom-com to the world’s screens with the upcoming title, Seriously Single. The comedy, featuring popular names Fulu Mugovhani, Tumi Morake, Bohang Moeko, and Yonda Thomas, will be released on Friday 31 July 2020.

Read more | These are the iconic local movies and series you can now stream on Netflix

Despite the originals, Netflix has also announced Jiva!, a local African production, streamed 8 (2019), a supernatural film and housed classic local series and movies like Intersexions, Hopeville, Four Corners and Tsotsi among others for streaming on the site.