Thupo Film Selected for Durban FilmMart Jumpstart

  • The programme promises to ignite creativity and propel emerging talents to new heights



A locally produced film titled “Thupo” (Initiation), directed by Moreetsi Gabang and produced by Frank Oteng, has been selected for this year’s Durban FilmMart Jumpstart Project.

Taking place online during the Durban FilmMart from 20 to 23 July 2023, Jumpstart has served as an incubator programme dedicated to equipping aspiring filmmakers with essential tools and techniques of scriptwriting.

“As a producer, this means we are more advantaged to reach the international market as we can now collaborate with reputable organisations such as the Durban FilmMart Institute, Produire au Sud and Institur Francais who have great networks across the globe,” Oteng told Time Out.


Thupo the film


“We are much more advantaged in terms of featuring in film festivals and selling our content to different broadcasters and networks across the world.”

Thupo is a look at a defining moment in the lives of three Batswana who learn the values of compassion, respect and responsibility.


Over the course of a single day in a village in Botswana, a little boy’s relationship with his domestic helper is threatened, a dog’s life is endangered, and the barren wife of a pastor discovers her albino niece is missing.



The 2023 Jumpstart Project mentors include Tracey-Lee Rainers, who is a story development practitioner. She is well known for the popular Netflix production Seriously Single and SAFTAs award-winning Address Unknown; Jérémie Dubois, a screenwriter who has written over a dozen short stories (two of which were selected for the Cannes Film Festival), as well as several feature films.


In 2023, Dubois is shooting three new films and Lucas Taillefer, who co-founded the Ecuadorian distribution company Trópico Cine, works for Festival des 3 Continents (Nantes) and runs the international training programme Produire au Sud.


Durban FilmMart


Africa’s leading film event, Durban FilmMart (DFM), returns for its 14th edition from 21 to 24 July 2023. This year’s theme is African Constellations, which celebrates the film industry’s champions by envisioning a future African Star System.


The programme includes 20 live action and 8 animation projects in the Pitch and Finance Forum, as well as masterclasses, discussions and sessions promoting the African film industry, inclusivity and diversity.