News Brief

R1.6 Million In Ticket Sales For ‘5 Fingers For Marseilles’ Movie Is 'Solid Business For A Western Film'

The film is struggling even though it had an impressive debut.

The South African movie Five Fingers For Marseilles has been on circuit for the over five weeks. It has, however, grossed a meager R1.6 million (approximately $130,000) in ticket sales.

The founder of Indigenous Film Distributors, the company distributing Five Fingers, Helen Kuun, is neither surprised nor disappointed by the low figures.

She told The New AgeThe New Age:

"Five Fingers is playing on 11 sites and it is in its fifth week, with R1.6m in ticket sales to date. That is very solid business for a western if you consider how they typically perform in South Africa.
"Even Tarantino's Hateful Eight did not reach the FFFM level nor did True Grit. Also bear in mind this genre is pretty violent so the film has a 16 rating. High ratings have an impact on a film's intended possible audience. Considering this along with the fact that the film is subtitled and none of the other westerns were, the film has done well."

The movie had a promising opening, with an impressive R500,000 (approximately $40,000) in ticket sales.

Read: Financing a Film That Has an All-South African Cast Was a Huge Challenge, Says Director of 'Five Fingers for Marseilles'

Creative and Cultural Industries Federation of South Africa president Tony Kgoroge blames the lack of support for local stories to institutions such as the National Film and Video Foundation and the Department of Trade and Industry, according to The New Age.

He told the paper:

"We can't blame distributors of films such as cinemas. These are business entities and their decision-making is informed by how much your film has invested in its marketing budget. "Not many local films have the money needed to be able to do proper marketing."
Photo by Alfredo Zuniga / AFP

Mozambique's Political Unrest: Where Things Stand

Fears continue to be on the rise as more attacks by militants are anticipated in Mozambique's Cabo Delgado province.

On March 24th, militants stormed Palma—a gas-rich city in Mozambique—as part of an ongoing insurgency in the country dating back to 2017. Dozens of civilians have been killed although an official death toll has not been declared as of yet. Currently, at least 8000 more have been left displaced, fleeing to other parts of the country and attempting to seek asylum in Tanzania. This is believed to be the worst attacks carried out by the Islamist militant group, Al-Shabaab, to date.
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