S&A alraedy told you about a larger initiative titled ImagiNations, created by Djo Tunda Wa Munga and Steve Markovitz. Djo Munga is the writer director of maybe the highest profile film last year from Africa (outside of Africa) Viva Riva!; and Steve Markovitz was one of Viva Riva!'s producers.
Munga and Markovitz paired up to form Suka! Productions to produce a diverse slate of projects, and this new initiative (ImagiNations) is one of them; a Pan-African project in which a series of six feature films based on contemporary African literature will be produced. Kenyan director Wanuri Kahiu was revealed to be one of the filmmakers already attached to helm one of those adaptations. And we assume Djo himself will direct one of them as well.
Announced at the Cannes Film Festival today, an extension of their already-existing collaboration and plans, as they team up with 234 Media (who they previously collaborated with to release Viva Riva! in an unprecedented 19-country theatrical release in Africa) to form a new production/distribution deal which will see feature films produced by Munga and Markovitz distributed by 234 Media, throughout Africa.
So it looks like this cements and extends the deal beyond Viva Riva!.
Cannes, France (May 24, 2012) – 234 Media, Big World Cinema and Suka! Productions have concluded a new production and distribution deal whereby feature films produced by Big World and Suka! will be distributed by 234 Media in Africa.
The agreement was announced today at the Cannes Film Festival by Big World CEO Steven Markovitz, 234 Media CEO and founder Dayo Ogunyemi and Djo Munga, award-winning helmer of Suka! Productions.
Under the agreement, 234 Media offers an output deal covering Africa to Big World and Suka! Productions and will also include a first look option on financing new film productions by Big World and Suka!.
Markovitz described it as a natural extension of the trio's previous collaboration on an unprecedented 19-country theatrical release in Africa of Munga's MTV Movie Award- and African Movie Academy Award-winning noir, Viva Riva. "There's a real dearth of distribution capacity in Africa, and with a promising line-up of films in development, it's important for us that we are able to reach not just international audiences but African audiences as well. With an affiliated exhibition business, 234 Media gives us that important reach across Africa.
"It's a pleasure to extend and expand our relationship with talented and experienced professionals like Munga and Markovitz said Ogunyemi. "Our alliance is at the forefront of a new wave of bold and assertive filmmaking in Africa, and we will ensure that African audiences get to watch these powerful African stories."