Menzi Ngubane and Joseph Shabalala to be honoured at Ugu Film Festival
Two late icons in the film and music industry — seasoned actor Menzi Ngubane and musician and founder of Ladysmith Black Mambazo Joseph Shabalala — will be honoured at the 10th Ugu Film Festival taking place at the Margate Sands Hotel on Thursday.
Menzi died of a stroke in 2021 and was largely known and loved for his roles in Generations and Isibaya and many other productions that he starred in.
The festival will go live at the Shelly Beach Ster Kinekor cinema on Thursday October 20 with the screening of Music Is My Life as the opening film.
Music Is My Life is directed by Mpumi Mbele and provides an engaging account of the life of Joseph Shabalala and his rise to international fame with his Isicathamiya singing male choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
The founder of the multiple Grammy award-winning group died in February 2020 at the age of 78.
The festival will wrap up with the screening of the documentary The Life and Times of Menzi Ngubane, which tells the story of the late legend's life and brilliantly captures his stellar acting career.
The film is directed by Ntokozo Mahlalela and is a legacy project by Menzi’s family aimed at preserving and honouring his invaluable contribution to the film industry.
Newly appointed festival director Zanele Nhlapo said the 10th festival is focused on honouring local artistic talent and heritage as well as setting the tone for the overall growth and transformation of the film industry.
“In curating the films for this year’s instalment, we were directed by the pressing need to reignite and revive the local film economy, and what better way to do that than to showcase inspiring local content which affirms our creative and production capabilities as South Africans.
‘We are eternally grateful to our partners KZN Film Commission and Ugu south coast Tourism for believing and investing in our vision.”
Speaking to TshisaLIVE at the time of producing the documentary, the late actor's wife Sikelelwa Sishuba spoke of preserving Menzi's memory.
“My husband was one in a million. He was the best in his craft. When you say Menzi Ngubane even a six-year-old knows him. I would like to keep his legacy going ... he was the best. A gem like that cannot be forgotten.”