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Tuesday, April 8, 2014


The city of Durban will be the dazzling backdrop for South Africa’s first-ever Punjabi film production, set to take place in and around what is fondly known as the country’s ‘playground.’

Currently filming for several weeks, crew and cast of Zorawar, will take advantage of the beauty, vibrancy and versatility that Durban and surroundings has to offer. From the idyllic seaside location of Durban’s Maydon Wharf to the lush green landscape of Oribi Gorge to the hustle and bustle of the city centre, filming is said to capture the many visual facets the city of Durban boasts as a film location.

The Punjabi film, reminiscent of the cultural province of Punjab located in the north-west of India, which borders Pakistan, has a star-studded Indian cast, which includes; award-winning Indian rapper Yo Yo Honey, India MTV’s VJ Gurbani Judge, Indian Television Academy Award winning actress Achint Kaur and acclaimed veteran actors Pawan Malhotra, Mukul Dev and Amit Behl.

Packed with drama and intrigue, nail-biting action and even a bit of romance, Zorawar tells the tale of the journey of a young Indian soldier in search for the truth of his South African father and the emotional roller coaster ride he undertakes in his quest to find answers.

Directed by Vinnil Markan and produced by Rajiee M Shinde and Rabindra Narayan of India’s White Umbrella Movies, Zorawar’s South African line production for local filming is produced by Epic Entertainment, a Durban based production company.

The R3 million local budget will see the film shoot in over 20 different locations across the breadth of the city. These locations worked for the script and it also shows off Durban’s beauty, and landscape,” said South Africa based producer of the film, Rakesh Maharaj of Epic Entertainment, who is confident that the Punjabi film will add value to the film destination appeal of the city of Durban. “I believe it will encourage more film makers from India to shoot in Durban, which is a fairly new location with the Indian Punjabi film industry.”

Maharaj also firmly believes that the film will significantly contribute to revenue of the local film industry. From equipment to props - all services acquired will be sourced from local suppliers, said Maharaj. In addition, close to 300 local extras will be hired to appear in the various scenes of the film.

Durban Film Office Head, Toni Monty concurs with Maharaj that the filming of Zorawar in Durban demonstrates the uniqueness the city has to offer in terms of iconic key attractions such as Ushaka Marine World and Moses Mabhida Stadium. “These were world class locations combined with an awesome lifestyle, weather and culture;” Monty adds. “This, paired with the cost of crew’s accommodation and local spend, translates into big spin-offs for the local economy. We hope to see many more Punjabi films shot in Durban.”

Production of the film is set to conclude in May, with an Indian and South African release planned shortly thereafter.