Netflix has launched a project with UNESCO on Thursday to hunt out young filmmakers from sub-Saharan Africa and explore traditional folktales from the region through innovative short film contests.
“African Folktales, Reimagined” teams the US streaming giant with UNESCO to find six young directors to make a short film to be aired on Netflix next year.
Winners of the competition will be trained and mentored by industry professionals and provided with a US$75,000 production budget to create short films that will premiere on Netflix in 2022 as an “Anthology of African folktales”.
Ben Amadasun, head of original content and acquisitions for Netflix in Africa said “this initiative aims to seek out new talents and great folk tales which are a very important part of our heritage and culture in Africa.”
The competition seeks to discover new voices and to offer emerging filmmakers in Sub-Saharan Africa visibility on a global scale. It seeks to find the bravest, wittiest, and most surprising retellings of some of Africa’s most-loved folktales and share them with entertainment fans around the world in over 190 countries.
Set to open on October 14, 2021, the competition will be administered by Dalberg. In addition, each of the 6 winners will also receive $25,000.
UNESCO and Netflix both strongly believe in the importance of promoting diverse local stories, and bringing them to the world. They recognise that many emerging filmmakers struggle with finding the right resources and visibility to enable them to fully unleash their talents and develop their creative careers. This competition aims to address these issues and enable African storytellers to take a first step towards showcasing talent to a global audience.
This partnership will help generate sustainable employment, encourage economic growth and therefore contribute to the achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, a series of targets established by the United Nations which aims to end global poverty in all its forms by the end of this decade. This film competition will also help reduce inequalities by facilitating access to global markets and by guaranteeing dignified working conditions. All of these are key goals within the 2030 Agenda.
For the first round, applicants will be required to submit a synopsis of their concept (no more than 500 words) as well as links to a recent CV and a portfolio/ evidence of any past audiovisual work they have produced. Applications can be submitted via www.netflix-growcreative.com/unesco from October 14th at 14:00 PM GMT and will close on November 14th, 2021 at 11:59 AM GMT
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