Hosted by one of South Africa’s seasoned TV darlings Dineo Langa, local funny man Mpho Popps & the dashing and talented Graeme Richards, the SAFTAs, themed “Still Shining”, were a spectacularly executed, socially distanced show, following a challenging year experienced by the industry.
Celebrating a successful run, MultiChoice shone the brightest, with the highest number of total wins at this year’s virtual celebration of the stars. Known for contributing largely to the growth of SA’s local content, MultiChoice leads with a total of 47 awards won for both nights, boasting wins in various categories such as “Best Film” for kykNET’s Griekwastad, “Best Telenovela” for M-Net’s first telenovela Legacy and “Best Structured Soapie Reality Show” for Life with Kelly Khumalo, which viewers enjoy on the broadcast giant’s streaming platform Showmax, to name a few.
To mark its inaugural broadcast of the SAFTAs, DStv gifted each winner with its newest decoder, the DStv Explora Ultra. The Explora Ultra is for entertainment fans who enjoy the best local and international content; viewers can explore award-winning shows from DStv, and access streaming services such as Showmax, Amazon Prime Video, and YouTube, or add Netflix to their bill conveniently from a single device.
“Mzansi Magic is proud to serve as an official broadcast partner of the 15th Annual South African Film Television Awards. We are elated to celebrate and showcase local film and television talent, particularly during this challenging time in our industry. We applaud all the SAFTA nominees and congratulate those who walked away with the prestigious Golden Horn.” says Nomsa Philiso, Channel Director: M-Net.
This year, the SAFTAs made its debut on the newly rebranded S3. And what a great way to celebrate than with “Hectic on 3’s” Entle Bizana winning the public vote category for Best TV Presenter for the second year in a row.
“S3 wants its viewers to Open Up to its new exciting journey that promises to curate content that will stimulate thought, create conversations and entertain audiences. Our partnership with the SAFTAs delivers on our promise and mandate to support the growth of the film and television industry. We are delighted to have hosted this year’s SAFTAs, along with Mzansi Magic in support of the talent, creativity, and extraordinary output of the industry which has delivered great content despite challenges created by the pandemic. S3 will continue to support the local creative industry as has the SABC as a whole in the past. Congratulations to all the nominees and also to those that took the winning awards!” says Pat Van Heerden, Head of S3 bouquet.”
Sponsored by the Gauteng Film Commission (GFC), a long-standing partner of the SAFTAs, the Best Soapie & the Best Telenovela winners, eTV’s Rhythm City & M-Net’s Legacy received special congratulations from the Gauteng government on their formidable run, on SA television screens.
Commenting on the win, GFC’s Keitumetse Lebaka, Acting Chief Executive Officer said, “On behalf of the Gauteng government, the GFC is once again pleased to partner with the SAFTAs by sponsoring two of the popular categories the audiences enjoy. The winners in both categories are testament to the talent and content that is from Gauteng and we are highly motivated to continue our contribution towards the sustainability of the film and television industry in South Africa. The GFC is committed to continuing to support the industry as we continue to face the challenges of COVID-19. I would like to congratulate all the industry professionals who participated in the success of the 15th Annual SAFTAs”.
Netflix wins big
Having bagged a total of 19 awards following an astounding 45 nominations, Netflix’s debut at the SAFTAs is one for the books. Amongst those winners are Netflix Originals “How to Ruin Christmas: The Wedding” & Feature Film “Riding with Sugar” as well as 2021 Oscars winner “My Octopus Teacher”.
The new & popular category which attracted the highest number of submissions this year, the Best Online Content golden horn was awarded to social media favourite “Noko Mashaba”.
Elated at the successful virtual celebration as custodians of the SAFTAs, National Film & Video Foundation CEO, Makhosazana Khanyile said, “SAFTAs 15, what an amazing win for the industry we serve! I’d like to congratulate all the winners as well as our valued partners, especially our broadcast partners, Mzansi Magic and S3. It truly is an honour for the NFVF to be the custodians of the SAFTAs and to watch the industry grow and flourish. Amidst a global pandemic, our artists persevered, entertained, and challenged themselves and this can be witnessed in the number of nominees that this year witnessed. I’m grateful for the industry that continues to walk the SAFTAs journey with us and true to this year’s theme, the industry is absolutely still shining”.
True to their mandate in supporting & promoting SA’s nation brand, proud partner to the SAFTAs for the second year in a row, Brand South Africa’s Sithembile Ntombela, Acting Chief Marketing Officer said, “South Africa’s film and television industry is critical in how Brand South Africa is able to market and favourably position the country. South Africa has a unique story to tell the world and it is through film and television that our own narrative can change perceptions & educate the world about our diverse nation.
In partnering with the SAFTAs, we wish to honour, celebrate and promote the creative quality and excellence of the South African Film and Television industry. Congratulations to all the winners from – actors, actresses, producers, artists, wardrobe stylists, and all technical staff. May you continue building the legacy of storytelling and may your stories inspire a positive African narrative that is revered and admired by the world.”
Another first for the SAFTAs was a partnership with BT Signature as its exclusive celebratory beverage sponsor. The brainchild of someone whose career kicked off in the realms of tv presenting and acting, Boity Thulo’s BT Signature, developed alongside Matthew Krone, is designed to turn every moment, such as a SAFTA’s moment, into a BT Signature moment.
In congratulating the winners, Thulo said, “It’s been an honour to partner with the SAFTAs this year, especially at such a crucial time for artists, like myself, to feel recognised for their valuable contribution to the economy. BT Signature was created as an ode to individual success and an inspiration to all to own their signature and make their mark. Congratulations to all the winners who have done just that!”
The SAFTAs would like to thank its official media partner, PRIMEDIA Broadcasting through its radio brands 947, KFM, 702 & Cape Talk, who have been formidable in the build-up and profiling of our amazing local talent.