A month after Africa Magic, a pay channel under DStv launched the Africa Magic Viewersâ€™ Choice Awards, there has been a cold response from local artists, On the Arts has established.
But some artists in the country have expressed ignorance over the awards saying there is little or nothing at all they have heard despite showing interest in the initiative.
â€œHonestly I am hearing the news from you. I never knew of the awards which people just need to submit their works. However, despite little being known, I must commend Multichoice Africa for the initiative to recognise the blossoming Africaâ€™s creative art. This is what we have been craving for considering that in the past, such awards were only for South Africans. I will definitely make submissions before the deadline,â€ said budding local film producer Shemu Joyah.
Joyahâ€™s Seasons of a Life won several international awards despite not having flooded the local market. To reduce piracy he chose to sell on his own.
Created to celebrate African film and television talent, viewers will decide the winners directly, alongside several professionally judged categories.
In total, 28 awards in 26 categories will be awarded ranging from acting and directing to script-writing and cinematography. Other fields which will be honoured include editing, make-up, sound, lighting and costuming, among others. In addition, the awards will feature two categories destined to become annual talking points â€“ the Industry Merit Award and the Trail blazer of the Year Award.
â€œIt has been part of our plan to create a specific event that honours, celebrates and recognises those people who are giving so much of their talent and creativity to ensuring the popularity and evolution of African film and TV. However, there is no response in as far as local artists making submissions is concerned,â€ said Chimwemwe Nyirenda Multichoice Malawiâ€™s sales and marketing manager.
â€œWe are aiming to create a platform that showcases and supports the film and television community, while simultaneously entertaining and engaging viewers. We are committed to the success of this initiative as we truly believe it will contribute positively to the efforts of filmmakers from Lagos to Nairobi, Lusaka to Kampala and all across Africa. And with this little response, we will do more publicity maybe most people do not know and appreciate the importance of the awards,â€ he said.
Deadline for all submissions which are free is Wednesday, 31 October 2012.