The magic of SARAFINA! was once again on display as the film premiered at IMAX in Johannesburg and Durban. The all-time classic South African film brought together cast members from the original film, including producer Anant Singh, lead actress Leleti Khumalo and cast members Khanyo Maphumulo, Mmabatho Ramoupi, and Seipati Sothoane.
The premiere was a star-studded affair, with guests including Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Nomalungelo Gina, Gauteng MEC for Economic Development Tasneem Motara, Ambassador of France to South Africa David Martinon, muso Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse, CEO of SASCOC Nozipho Jafta, and a host of local and international media.
Following in the spirit of the film as a “celebration in song,” Khanyo Maphumulo who was the lead singer in SARAFINA!, broke into a spontaneous rendition of “The Lord’s Prayer” and was promptly joined by Mmabatho and Seipati, much to the delight of the audience. The premiere also marked a reunion of the cast members, whose talents remain as evergreen as it was 31 years ago when the film was first released.
Watching the film in the larger-than-life IMAX format enhanced the audience experience, and the audience was deeply moved. They unanimously acknowledged that the film is an exceptional experience when watched in a cinema. Importantly, SARAFINA! still resonates with people today.
Anant Singh said, “We chose August to release the new version of SARAFINA! as a tribute to, and a celebration of women. I have fond memories of Khanyo, Mmabatho and Seipati working with Leleti on set, and it was wonderful that they performed the iconic ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ almost exactly as they did in the film. Cinemagoers are in for a special treat when SARAFINA! opens at cinemas today, and it allows a multi-generational audience to experience the film together.”
The new version of SARAFINA! released at 28 cinemas across South Africa on 11 August, a Videovision Entertainment release through United International Pictures South Africa.