Twenty-three-year-old Julian Fouche from Germiston and Letlotlo “Kitty” Mohlabeng (20) from Randfontein are the promising young screen stars who have nabbed an all-expenses paid trip to Hollywood courtesy of UIPSA. After displaying their incredible talent and passion for the entertainment business, esteemed Spitfire Films directors Akin Omotoso, AK and Peter Heaney, named them the respective male and female winners in M-Net Movies’ Greatest Movie Ever Made campaign.
Julian and Kitty’s Greatest Movie Ever Made journey started when M-Net Movies invited viewers from across Africa to submit a video online with entrants acting out a scene from one of their favourite films. Once the hordes of submissions had been narrowed down to the best of the best, seventeen aspiring actors received the opportunity to hone their skills with intensive acting workshops led by Omotoso, AK and Heaney. From there, the Top 6 clinched parts in The Greatest Movie Ever Made, a unique and fun-filled half-hour film which will make its on-air debut on M-Net Movies Premiere on Sunday, 4 December at 17:20.
“Over the years M-Net has unearthed plenty of unknown stars - from singers to presenters and actors. The Greatest Movie Ever Made was yet another exciting marketing drive not only to discover hot new talent, but also to give the finalists first-hand experience of how the movie-making industry works,” says M-Net’s Channels Head of Publicity, Lani Lombard. “We trust that the Top 6 have learnt a great deal from their award–winning mentor directors and that we will see them on our screens again in future.”
Even though M-Net initially communicated that viewers would be able to vote for their favourites once the film has aired, it was later decided that the best people to choose the winning actors would be the directors who saw them in action on set. As all screen actors would be able to tell you, acting often entails far more than the final product on screen.
“Ours was not an easy shoot either,” says The Greatest Movie Ever Made director Peter Heaney. “We filmed twice what we’d normally schedule in for a day, under very trying conditions (try being put under the rain machine three dozen times on a cold night in the middle of town for example!) over a five day period. We were working fast, everyone was tired and the scenes were complex and difficult to pull off. We were looking for actors who we felt could not only deliver on camera, but off it too, especially when the going got tough. The entire cast were consummate professionals, and picking the winners finally entailed hours and hours of deliberation.”
“Kitty was an absolute star!” says Heaney. "Her commitment to the process was absolute, she was always very prepared and willing, and conducted herself beautifully. We think the finished product bears this out better than anything. She shines on screen and we’ve no doubt she will go far.”
While Kitty proved to be a lovely leading lady, Julian stepped up to the plate with what is probably one of the most difficult performances in modern cinema history. “We were nervous about including this scene in our movie, concerned that few people would be able to pull it off, and Julian to his credit did.” Heaney says. " He was a true performer on set, constantly in character, working and reworking the scene in his own time between shots, making sure he was fully invested and prepared for a demanding role. This part required some serious homework and dedication and he came through with flying colours!”
Watch the winners and their co-stars in The Greatest Movie Ever Made on Sunday 4 December at 17:20 on M-Net Movies Premiere.