First prize in the international My RØDE Reel 2020 has been awarded to Simbithi resident, Timothy Hay who walks away with $200 000 after judges deemed his short film, based on a true story, worthy of the grand prize.
Hay, lead of Hellmot Productions, packed up fellow crew and cast and set out for the Transkei earlier this year where they filmed ‘Amanzi Olwande’.
Crammed into a trailer, armed with surfboards, abled bodies and film gear, the crew of six spent three days capturing the footage needed to bring to life the tragic true-life-story of how Port St Johns resident, Avuyile ‘Avo’ Ndamase lost his brother, Zama, to a fatal shark attack.
‘Amazni Olwande’ means Ocean Water and was already at the time of submitting thought to be a contender for the prize in the world largest short film competition, My RØDE Reel 2020.
The riveting film, captured in 8K, was paneled by judges Selina Miles, Meyne Wyatt and Ryan Connolly.
“Amazni Olwandle was absolutely excellent,” said My RØDE Reel judge Ryan Connolly.
“Excellent cinematography, rock-solid pace, well-acted, and a tonne of heart. It conveyed its emotion and story effortlessly while showing a lot of respect for its audience. I was really floored by it.”
Despite entering under the category drama, the Hellmot production’s short film walked away with first prize in the main competition.
Hay has extended his thanks to what he calls his ‘dream team’, and said that the short film would not have been possible without ‘Avo’s’ input, and help from Kyle Smith and Dylan Theron.
A shout out was also extended to Salt Rock’s ‘two best actors’ Sanele Antiono Mthethwa and Mphathi Ndlovu, who played younger versions of the Ndamase brothers.
For a behind the scenes look into the production of this film, watch the video below.