WINDHOEK, NOV 19 – Namibian movie “The White Line” has successfully entered the Oscars 2022 race in the general category, thus making it the first ever Namibian film to do so and to be independently submitted. This is also a debut movie for film director Desiree Kahikopo-Meiffret, who becomes the first female director from Namibia to direct a feature film, while it is also a debut for Namibian screenwriter Michael Pulse.
Fully-funded by the Namibia Film Commission, it is also the first movie to foruc on Apartheid in Namibia. It was submitted to the Golden Globes, presented at Cannes and won a host of awards across African film festivals and across the world.
‘The White Line’ is a historical drama set in Namibia in 1963 at the time when it was still ruled by the South African Apartheid regime, until Namibia’s independence in 1990. It tells the story of two unlikely heroes albeit ordinary humans, Sylvia and Pieter, who fall in love despite all odds. Sylvia is a Herero Namibian woman who lives the hardship common to women like her in the 1960’s in Windhoek and Pieter is a white South African police officer, there to enforce the deeply flawed laws of Apartheid.
For Sylvia and Pieter, love is the forbidden pursuit that takes place in a country and at a time where the Immorality Act irrevocably sanctioned their amorous endeavors. Similar to ‘Loving’ by Jeff Nichols in its subject matter, ‘The White Line’ distinguishes itself by offering a novel insight into a part of African colonial history that is seldom known to wider audiences or explored in cinematic exposés.
Based on an original idea of first-time director Desiree Meiffreit-Kahikopo who weaved and pieced together a riveting story based on a screenplay by first-time screenwriter, Michael Pulse. Filmed in 14 days on location, in Karibib, Usakos and Okahandja standing in for Windhoek, the capital city of Namibia, ‘The White Line’ is a passion project brought to fruition by a trio of exceptionally talented filmmakers for whom the film has become an opportunity to address Namibia’s rich, passionate and nuanced past.
Yanibes Consulting has since organised a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for an Oscars campaign that will allow Oscars voters to see, appreciate and cast theirs votes for the first female directed Namibian movie in competition. Funds collected will cover the costs of organizing the required events and activities that will grant the film chances to be assessed by voters, including: – screenings for Oscars voters – bulletin board in Hollywood – posters – ads in relevant media – travel and accommodation for the cast and crew
‘The White Line’ premiered at the 40th Durban International Film Festival in July 2019 and went on to screen at a host of international film festivals and gained numerous accolades. – NDN Staffer