October 2, 2022

Firstdawn Arts Film Library Finds Home On Showmax

FirstDawn Arts this week announced that its library of three films has been acquired by MultiChoice Showmax under a twenty‐four months’ non‐exclusive license.

Showmax is a Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD) platform on MultiChoice DStv, which renders video streaming services to its subscribers. 

The films that have been acquired are: Seasons of a Life, The Last Fishing Boat and The Road to Sunrise. Shortly Showmax shall announce the commencement dates for streaming.

FirstDawn Arts would also wish to announce that it has signed a Distribution Agreement with the French international company, TRACE.TV as its international agent representing the films The Last Fishing Boat and The Road to Sunrise.

According to Shemu Joyah the producer, it has been the wish for FirstDawn Arts to get an agent for its films since that greatly facilitates the distribution of films on various platforms, and this agreement offers opportunities for the acquisition of the films globally.

Seasons of a Life was produced in 2008 while The Last Fishing Boat was produced in 2012.

In February 2022, despite a 10‐year period, a film clip from The Last Fishing Boat “Mustafa wandigulira” trended on Social Media, revitalising interest in the film, both at home and abroad.

According to the synopsis, a once successful fisherman on Lake Malawi (Yusufu) is now struggling due to the depletion of fish in the lake, while his cultural values are being threatened by the expanding tourist industry.

His son (Mustafa), whom he had hoped would be a fisherman, has become a tourist guide and rumours are abound that he sleeps with both female and male tourists for money; while his young and beautiful third wife (Biti Anefa) is torn between loyalty to her husband and the endless sexual overtures by a white tourist (Richard) who is ready to pay her anything in order to sleep with her.

The story develops into a cultural clash between traditional African values and modernisation.

Joyah said about the film: “The Last Fishing Boat explores the collision between African traditional culture and modernisation, and its impact on a simple Malawian family caught in the middle.”  

The Road to Sunrise was produced in 2017 and became the first Malawian film ever to enter the Oscars in the 91st Academy Awards in the Best Foreign Language Film in 2019.

The Road to Sunrise has never been released, only launched and screened several times to fulfil the conditions for the Oscars.

Therefore, the release on Showmax will provide most people with the first ever opportunity to watch the film. All three films have won awards at various international film festivals in Africa, Europe and America.

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