Local film, ‘Miss Understood’ makes double debut in Namibia and Zambia
Esther Beukes celebrated her directorial debut at a screening of her new film ‘Miss Understood’ at MultiChoice Namibia in Windhoek on 21 September.
Miss Understood, a film about a librarian who suffers from mental illness and has to navigate her way through a series of emotions from an interesting perspective, has already been selected for the Sotambe Film Festival in Zambia.
“It’s important to tell our local stories because they speak directly to African hearts and minds. They inspire pride in our local cultures and nations. Through the MultiChoice Talent Factory, of which Esther Beukes is a graduate, MultiChoice enables a new generation of storytellers to tell their stories that were never told until now. Facilitating the premiere of Miss Understood underpins our determination to grow Africa’s young and talented film and TV industry,” said MultiChoice Namibia Head of Corporate Affairs, Elzita Beukes. “On behalf of MultiChoice Namibia, I would like to extend our huge congratulations to Esther for the production of this new film and we wish her even more success in her future endeavours.”
Esther Beukes, who produced the film, has an extensive history in the Namibian film industry, starting off as a make-up artist and stylist, and later moving on to become a student of the AFDA in Cape Town. Later, she trained under the DW Akademie in Kenya and proceeded to graduate from the MultiChoice Talent Factory.
Due to this exposure, she stayed on as an associate producer in Zambia for an M-Net original soapie and other Mzansi Magic productions and worked closely with Botswana’s Nikita Mokgware who was the screenwriter of Miss Understood, and a fellow MTF Alum.
“MTF really helped me bring the concept of Miss Understood to life. I worked with former MTF students and honestly, I’m so grateful. Thank you to MultiChoice Namibia for believing in and supporting me from the beginning until the premiere,” said Esther Beukes.
Starring Zambian radio and television presenter, Michie Malambo as the protagonist of the film and stepping into her first role as an actress in Miss Understood, she effortlessly portrays and narrates a troubled character in the African context.
The film has already been nominated at the Women Festival in Nigeria for Best Short Film and has won the Best International Short Film at the Festival International de Kinshasha, among other accolades.
Sharing advice to upcoming filmmakers, the screening consisted of a panel discussion featuring Esther Beukes and clinical psychologist Cynthia Beukes.