Animation takes centre stage at the 2023 Durban FilmMart

‘Azania Rises’ is one of eight animations that will showcase at the 2023 Durban FilmMart. Picture: Supplied.

‘Azania Rises’ is one of eight animations that will showcase at the 2023 Durban FilmMart. Picture: Supplied.

Published Jul 4, 2023


The Durban FilmMart Institute (DFMI) is once again preparing to celebrate the current film industry champions and future leaders in film at this year’s Durban FilmMart.

Under the theme “African Constellations” the festival will pay special attention to animation, a rapidly growing genre not only in Africa, but around the world.

According to the DFMI, the festival will showcase eight animations as well as offer “four specialised sessions which will not only be a gathering point for creators and institutions, but also offer a platform to showcase the innovative ideas that are top of mind for leaders in this sector.”

Magdalene Reddy, director of the Durban FilmMart, said: “The animation industry in Africa is witnessing significant growth and recognition especially as it highlights cultural diversity and unique perspectives, earning international acclaim for African animators’ creativity and storytelling.”

Adding that collaborations and networking opportunities will take centre stage with a “dedicated offering of events for animation practitioners.”

The four specialised sessions will include:

“The Correct Picture - The Dynamics of Characterisation in Animation” which will look at the issues surrounding authentic voices and representation across various film mediums.

The session brings together Raymond Malinga (Creatures Animation), Yolanda Mogatusi (1000 Hugs Films) and Dillon Khan (Nickelodeon).

“Creative Currency - Professional Opportunities For Women in the Animation Industry” will look at professionals who are working to create a more diverse and inclusive industry for women-identifying animators.

Featured guests include Ebele Okoye (Jolly Squid), Nosipho Maketo-van den Bragt (Chocolate Tribe) and Mounia Aram (Mounia Aram Company).

KZN Film will present its “Animation Growth Strategy” targeting KwaZulu-Natal as a province with animation growth potential.

Isabelle Rorke (Animation SA), Clare Louis (Katanamate Studios), Justin Yarrow (SuperScientists) and Nompi Vilakazi will lead the conversation.

And “Intermediaries in Africa, Now and Beyond” will give an understanding of the current landscape of digital creative industries while indicating a roadmap for interventions to strengthen it.

It will also highlight an intermediary success story from the animation industry indicating the importance of intermediary roles for the digital creative industries.

Featured speakers include Eduardo Cachucho (Fak'ugesi Festival and Digital Lab Africa), Sakhile Mogale, Tegan Birstow and Kirsten Khan (University of the Witwatersrand - Digital Arts).

The eight animation films on offer include:

Season 1 of “Azania Rises”, a South African production by Dr. Farayi Chinyanga and Fatuma Abdullah and directed by Farisai Kavayi.

“Boy Boi”, a Kenyan production produced by Shadrack Munene and J. Njogu Macharia and directed by J. Njogu Macharia.

“Between Heaven and Earth” (Entre ciel et terre) (Tunisia). Produced by Sarra Ben Hassen and directed by Nadia Rais.

“My ig World BIG” (South Africa), produced by Busisiwe Ntintili, Mpumi Sinxoto and Amanda Zungu and directed by Lebogang Sekwelenkwe.

“Naledi” (South Africa), produced by Lesego Vorster, Valentin Maupin and Aristote Douroudakis and directed by Lola Aikins.

“Spiky to the Core” (Egypt), from producer and director Nermeen Salem.

“Sola” (South Africa), produced by AJ Pitre, Thandiwe Mlauli and directed by Thandiwe Mlauli.

“The Passport of Mallam Ilia” (Nigeria), produced by Ferdinand Adimefe and directed by Chekwube Okonkwo.

For more information on the festival visit