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A TICKET to watch a movie is something most township residents can ill afford. But now, for only R10, people in Soweto will be able to watch a double-feature on Kasi Movie Nights.
Thapelo Mokoena, one of the brains behind Kasi Movie NightsThe work of Kasi Distribution, an initiative that combines the multiple talents of producers, film makers, distributors and directors, Kasi Movie Nights will debut at the Jabulani Amphitheatre on 22 June. Two local films will be shown: a comedy called Skyf and a drama called Jozi Kings.

Skyf is about seven strangers who are linked by their common addiction. For those who love drama, Jozi Kings brings to the screen the harsh realities of Jozi’s criminal underworld. From Soweto, Kasi Movie Nights will travel across the country in a cinema truck to reach audiences that have almost forgotten – or perhaps have never – experienced cinema screenings before.

The aim of Kasi Movie Nights is “to reignite the culture of cinema to the masses by, quite literally, bringing our cinema trucks to their doorsteps”, explains Jamie Ramsay, the founder. “Our mobile theatres will move from township to township, from rural area to rural area, until the thirst for media is quenched.”

He says the company aims to average 1 000 people per screening, who will “get to see a double bill of two quality South African feature films, as well as commentary and questions and answers with the stars of the screened movies”.

Kasi Movie Nights will not only promote local films, but also African films at large to South African and, ultimately, African audiences. Local businesses will benefit from the screenings too, as they will need to provide services such as toilets, security, ushers and food.

Ramsay was director of photography on the movies Lullaby, Triomf, District 9, Shirley Adams and Father Christmas Does not Come Here. Jozi Kings was his first feature-length film which was followed by his first reality show, Cream Cartel. He also made the Cannes nominated film, Skoonheid.

The other members of Kasi Distribution, Thapelo Mokoena and Mathapelo Maja, have all made a notable contribution to the film and entertainment industry.

Mokoena is a co-founder of the Akwande Foundation and the Young Producers Forum. An actor, he has appeared in the movies Drum and Skyf and in the television series Isidingo and Generations. He is most famous for being the face of Hunters Dry in the My Chinas ads.

Maja is new to the field but has done some great work already, among this the travel documentary Rough and Smooth. She also has her own production company, MIM Productions. She manages the Kasi Movie Nights alongside Mokoena and Ramsay.

At only R10 per person, adults will get to watch two movies. Students with tags will be able to watch for free. No alcohol will be allowed inside the venue but food and soft drinks will be on sale. Gates will open at 6pm and screenings will begin at 7pm.

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