national Arts Festival Banner

Monday, September 23, 2019


(Judy Naidoo)

South African film Kings of Mulberry Street, directed by Judy Naidoo, has been selected for two key upcoming European film festivals.

The first is the International Junior Film Competition of Schlingel, the 24th International Film Festival for Children and Young Audience in Chemnitz, Germany, to be held from October 7 to 13. This will be the film’s European premiere, after which it will be in Official Competition at the 33rd edition of the Cinekid Festival 2019 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, from October 19 to 25.

Schlingel, which began in 1996, is an international film festival for children and young audiences that takes place annually in Chemnitz in autumn. The festival gives an overview of the newest international productions in the area of children and youth films. The International Junior Film Competition is for films aimed to appeal directly to 11 to 13 year-olds.

“We are honoured to invite Judy Naidoo to the festival to present her marvellous film Kings of Mulberry Street and to present it to a European audience for the first time,” said Michael Harbauer, Schlingel festival director.

“Schlingel is one of the most credible festivals in its category and I am excited to have been invited to attend and to screen our film,” said Naidoo. “The festival handpicks world cinema made for young audiences and we are extremely proud of the cast and crew of Kings of Mulberry Street. Attending the festival will also give me the opportunity to learn from and exchange ideas about cinema with global industry leaders.”

Commenting on Cinekid, the largest children's media festival in the world, Naidoo said she was delighted at the news that her film is in competition, as only 15 films are selected from among hundreds of entries from all around the world in the Best Children’s Film section.

Set in the early 80s, the fictionalised area of Sugarhill District, Kings of Mulberry Street is a charmingly nostalgic story of two young Indian boys who have to find a way to overcome their differences and unite in order to defeat the bullying local crime lord who’s threatening their families. A delightful and hilarious adventure, with universal themes that will appeal to the whole family, the film also pays tribute to classic 80s Bollywood movies and their heroes. Visually colourful and vibrant, the film is also touching and heart-warming.

Naidoo has also been invited to screen Kings of Mulberry Street at the 28th St Louis International Film Festival (SLIFF) which will be held from November 7 to 17 in St. Louis, Missouri. The festival provides the opportunity for St Louis filmgoers to view the finest in world cinema and screens approximately 300 films over a period of 10 days.

Kings of Mulberry Street will be eligible for the Audience Choice Awards for Best Feature and Best International Feature. Confirming the invitation, Chris Clark, Artistic Director at Cinema St. Louis, called Kings of Mulberry Street funny and sweet and said his team were delighted to be screening it for their audience.

The film opened in South Africa on June 28, 2019, and is distributed by Indigenous Film Distribution.