Continuing its international festival run, “The Lucky Specials” will be screened at the San Francisco Black Film Festival Sunday, June 18 at noon at the African American Art & Culture Complex, 762 Fulton St. in San Francisco.
The film follows a guitarist and his friends on their journey to catapult their small-time band from a back-street bar to the big stage. Entertaining audiences across Africa and around the world with its authentic characters and new brand of African music, the film also brings audiences face-to-face with tuberculosis (TB).
“The Lucky Specials” are a cover band in a dusty town in southern Africa. Mandla (Oros Mampofu) is a miner by day and plays lead guitar by night. He dreams of making it big in the music industry. When tragedy strikes, the band, Mandla and their friend Nkanyiso (Sivenathi Mabuya) struggle to hold everything together.
Produced by Discovery Learning Alliance and Quizzical Pictures in association with HHMI Tangled Bank Studios, with support from Wellcome Trust, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), and USAID and PEPFAR through Management Sciences for Health (MSH), “The Lucky Specials” weaves messages into the narrative to help audiences understand and respond to one of the world’s biggest killers – TB – which killed 1.8 million people worldwide in 2015 (more people than died from AIDS that year).
With a unique fusion of live-action drama and state-of-the-art animation, the film reveals the unseen world of TB from the inside out.
South African director Rea Rangaka (Ode in Blood) led a phenomenal cast, including musician Blondie Makhene as Mandla’s mentor Bra Easy; Richard Lukunku (Thina Sobabili), Thomas Gumede (A Place Called Home) and Fulu Mugovhani (Ayanda) as Mandla’s bandmates; and Linda Sebezo (Gauteng Maboneng) as a businesswoman who threatens to make The Lucky Specials’ dreams fall apart.
“Media, particularly film, has immense power to entertain, to express emotions and to inform individuals in a way that nothing else can,” said Aric Noboa, president of Discovery Learning Alliance and producer of “The Lucky Specials.”
“This film has it all: a new genre of music created specifically for the movie, a great story and a powerful message. We are privileged to work with our distinguished partners to bring this story to audiences across Africa and around the world.”
“The Lucky Specials”was honored with awards at the Pan-African Film Festival of Ouagadougou (FESPACO) and has been selected for the Toronto Black Film Festival, the Harare International Festival of the Arts and the Zanzibar International Film Festival.
For tickets, go to the link.