Teboho Edkins, born in 1980 in the United States of America, grown up in Lesotho, Germany, South Africa as well as France, is film director and following the career of his renowned father Don Edkins, one of the most famous film producers of South Africa.
In Cape Town he studied Arts and he enhanced his course of studies with post graduations in France and Germany. Teboho Edkins documentaries are characterized by sociolcritical bias, for which he has taken several awards. In addition, he took part at umpteen film festivals, such as FID Marseille, Festival panafricain du cinéma et de la télévision de Ouagadougou (FESPACO), International Filmfestival Innsbruck, Vision du Reel Nyon, Tampere Short Film Festival or Berlinale. Teboho Edkins is explaining to our South Africa web portal his job-related visions and documentaries on South Africa.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: We
are welcoming to our South Africa web portal „SÜDAFRIKA — Land der
Kontraste” Teboho Edkins. film producer filmmaker who lives in Berlin.
You concentrate in your work on documentaries with sociocritical
messages on South African issues. In „Ask me I’m positive”, „True Love”,
or „Looking Good” you focused your productions on HIV. What are the
reasons to debate this pandemic?
The HIV pandemic, especially in Lesotho at the time when I made my
first film, Ask me I’m positive, was a monster that could simply not be
ignored, it was all prevalent but at the same time invisible —not
understood. Just image- Lesotho in 2004 was a county where almost 30% of
the population was infected with HIV, but only a handful of people were
public about their status and three of these were the protagonists in
the film. There was (and still is to an extent is) such confusion and
prejudice about the disease that it was the only topic I felt I could
make a film about.
helped make the film possible was that it was part of a really exciting
revolutionary series of 35 films titled, STEPS for the future, on HIV by
Southern African filmmakers that had been launched in 2000.
other film True Love, I don’t really deal with the HIV pandemic as
such, but it so happens that the character in Lesotho is HIV, so its not
about him being HIV positive but rather about a person that happens to
be HIV positive experiencing love and sex. (That he is HIV positive is
the status quo, I am trying to show how beyond having the virus one
lives a normal life- and I think this is really important to understand
especially in the context of Southern Africa where so many people are
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: In
„Gangster Project 1, you are taking a new topic with regard to crime in
South Africa. Are you changing your view on other social challenges?
Well I am not really a political activist, so I make films on topics
that I find relevant and interesting, and that I want to explore
filmically. After the HIV films for instance I made Gangster Project 1, a
sort of deconstruction of a Gangster Rap video with real gangsters and
then I also made Kinshasa 2.0 a short film about democracy and the
internet using second life, a virtual world …
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Your
new movie will be handling with crime in South Africa, too. What’s the
exactly title of your newest production, when it will be come out in
Germany and what it is about?
The working title of my latest film is Gangster Project . (its sort of
picks up on the idea of Gangster Project 1). Briefly it is a feature
length half-fiction half documentary Gangster film shot in Cape Town,
South Africa.. The basic story is a young white person wanting to make a
perfect gangster film, without really knowing what gangsters are, he
meets various gangsters, finally casts what he believes are the perfect
gangsters for his film, hangs out with them and pretty soon finds their
life uninspiring and boring, the violence they commit petty and dirty so
he starts to instigate acts of violence himself (all in the spirit of
making his gangster film), and so paradoxically grows closer to them and
understands them as people with real fears, too frightened to leave