LOCAL filmmaker Ben Mahaka (pictured) has described working with aspiring creative talent as a satisfying and rewarding experience.

Mahaka, who is a selection judge for the current intake in the MultiChoice Talent Factory Academy for Southern Africa, said he was thrilled with the level of talent and enthusiasm among participants in the factory.

“I thoroughly enjoyed being a judge for the MTF Academy. Interacting with highly driven young creatives who are at the coalface of our growing industry is always a joy for me,” he said.
“I’m always watching to see what comes out at the other end of the process.”

Mahaka, who is the director of Mahaka Media, said he believed the country has a major role to play in the growth and development of film and television production.

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“This means we must introduce more people into the industry, people who will be part of this growth and, indeed, will spur it on, and who will lead it into an ever-expanding future,” he said.

The MultiChoice Talent Factory is an initiative created by MultiChoice Africa in 2018 to stimulate the growth of the industry throughout Africa. It has established three academies in Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya) and Lusaka (Zambia).

The first class, which included two Zimbabweans, graduated in October last year while the second class — which also includes another Zimbabwean duo — is currently underway ahead of graduation in October this year in Lusaka.

Also under the MTF portfolio are master classes for existing industry professionals, as well as a portal being used to connect industry operatives across Africa to create awareness of the whole pool of talent in every field within the film and television industry.

“I’m working on Gaza, a minority-language television drama with a crew and cast almost entirely made up of first-timers from my home town, Chipinge. The series is an innovative training initiative for unemployed youths and it is shot on location in Chipinge,” he said.