In a country that lacks television series, unlike other African countries that have their own movie series such asGenerations, Isidingo and Rhythm City, a series in the making provides cause for celebration.
The series, titled Senses, is born to fill the gap by providing space for Malawians to enjoy locally made productions.
The first phase of the filming began in September last year with production of the pilot episode. The second phase began this month with more shooting. The series will be done in seasons and the first season, which is currently in production, has 13 episodes.
director Bruno Matumbi says Malawians should expect a series that is sensational as Senses has a great storyline which deals with issues affecting the society.
“Our audience will be enlightened and entertained at the same time. In the end, we will show the nation that it is possible to have a series of international quality made in Malawi and by Malawians,” he says.
He says hopes are high that the series will increase competition in Malawi’s small industry and will spur growth. Matumbi notes that there are plans to have Senses on the international market which could give a great profile for the country and could attract foreign producers.
“We are currently talking to stations in Zambia, Botswana and South Africa to give us chance to beam Senses in their country’s television stations. However, there is nothing concrete but they have seen the sample and they are waiting for us to complete so we can negotiate the full terms,” explains Matumbi.
The shooting of the crime-detective series is taking place in selected scenic areas within the city of Blantyre.
“The intention is to get rid of the biased image of our country that has been portrayed across the continent,” he says.
The series in the making has taken on board a lot of new faces in the Malawi movie industry with a few notable faces.
Some of these are Eweni Lemani, Imran Master, Constance Thyangathyanaga, Crystal Barrat, Arthur Chikantentha, Nkhwachi Mhango, Paul Mankhamba and Mathew Maramba and African Movie Academy Awards best actress nominee Flora Suya.
“We are trying hard to get fresh faces in the film industry. Malawi has so much potential that needs to come to life. The series has people who have been seen around but never imagined they had the potential to be good actors and actresses,” says Matumbi.
He says Senses is targeting a wide and diverse audience ranging from those between 18-45, average middle class who got some education and can understand English even if they aren’t fluent and even those who do not fully grasp English will be able to understand the story for it will also have subtitles.
The production is being done at Dawgfish Entertainment with Michael Phoya as production consultant, Shemu Joyah as the executive producer and Celeste Chitundu and Constance Thyangathyanga as producers.