On 5 March, in the attendance of the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa and Eastern Cape Premier, Lubabalo Oscar Mabuyane, the Eastern Cape Film Hub was unveiled in the Buffalo City Municipality.
Created through a collaboration between the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), the Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC), the Eastern Cape Provincial Arts and Culture Council (ECPACC), and Cortex Hub, the Film Hub aims to provide local filmmakers, editors and digital entrepreneurs access to a shared workspace with high-speed internet and resources to help accelerate their passions and chosen fields.
In 2012, the NFVF undertook a study to investigate the applicability of film hubs in South Africa, as a means of stimulating economic activity, driving transformation and creating jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities in the film sector. Out of that study, a concept document was produced which set out the criteria and a framework for the establishments of Film Hubs across the country. This initiative was driven by the lack of film activity in several regions across the country, mainly due to a lack of infrastructure that gives access to production and post-production facilities to aspirant filmmakers.
“The Eastern Cape Film Hub is part of the NFVF’s and the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture’s vision to create a thriving ecosystem of filmmaking. To that end, it is important that we ensure that filmmakers in all provinces are supported accordingly, and this Film Hub will serve as a blue print that can only be refined over time. We are also thrilled to be partnering with the Cortex Hub whose expertise lies in the digital entrepreneurship space, as technology is one of the key focus areas of moving our industry forward,” commented NFVF CEO Makhosazana Khanyile.
The facility will provide filmmakers access to training, mentoring and rental facilities to kickstart their filmmaking and editing careers. Following the completion of the programme, they will be tasked with creating a short film. The Film Hub will also ensure that young filmmakers entering the industry are exposed to collaborative efforts alongside successful local film talent. The Hub’s success will influence similar collaborations in underserviced parts of South Africa.
“We are proud and honoured as the Cortex Hub, to be working on such a project that has been running its operations successfully in the Buffalo City Municipality. We pride ourselves in servicing budding digital entrepreneurs with an incubation hub that can now be extended to filmmakers on the ground. Our expertise lies in helping entrepreneurs innovate and build game-changing products, which is what we aim to infuse in the filmmaking process to enrich filmmakers in the region,’’ says Anda Ngcaba, board member of the Cortex Hub
Aspiring filmmakers will have an opportunity to participate in a 12-month incubation programme. On the programme they will be given a chance to enhance their film business skills. Aspiring filmmakers that are interested in this opportunity click here – SA Film Hub.
“Buffalo City is honoured to see the creation of the country’s first Film Hub in the municipality. It is a known fact that Gauteng, Western Cape, and KZN have potentially the highest film and local content activities, and the opening of this hub in our municipality speaks volumes about the potential seen in the province. The government continues to seek ways in which it can increase investment and partnerships in the Creative Arts Industry and this is a great start in that effort,” says Mayor of Buffalo City, Xolo Pakati.