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The nominations for the 32nd Annual Genie Awards –  Canada’s equivalent of the Oscars – were announced by the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television and include seven nominations for the movie Bang Bang Club, which tells the story of South Africa’s famed team of photographers Ken Oosterbroek,

Kevin Carter, Joao Silva and Greg Marinovich. The four photojournalists became renowned for documenting the violence in the townships in the turbulent period between 1990 and 1994, leading up to South Africa’s first democratic elections.

The Canadian-South African production, directed by Emmy Award winner Steven Silver, a South African writer, director and producer, is based on the autobiography The Bang-Bang Club: Snapshots from a Hidden War, co-written by Greg Marinovich and João Silva.

The film was nominated in the following categories:

  1. Best Art Direction/Production Design – Emelia Weavind
  2. Best Cinematography – Miroslaw Baszak
  3. Best Direction – Steven Silver
  4. Best Music – Original Score, Philip Miller
  5. Best Performance By An Actor In A Supporting Role –Taylor Kitsch
  6. Best Overall Sound – Lou Solakofski, Stephan Carrier, Kirk Lynds
  7. Best Adapted Screenplay – Steven Silver

Vancouver-based Kitsch received a nomination for his role as Kevin Carter, the supremely talented but troubled photographer who committed suicide 14 months after winning the Pulitzer Prize for photography, while Silver was nominated both for best director and for his adapted screenplay of Marinovich and Silva’s best-selling book.

“Bang Bang Club has been a hit with audiences and critics alike,” says Lance Samuels, head of Out of Africa and the producer of the film. “It’s a great honour for a South African co-production, which tells the story of a tumultuous and significant time in South Africa’s history, to receive this level of recognition from such an esteemed industry body.”

“The film combines action and drama and pays tribute to the bravery of photojournalists,” says Helen Kuun, CEO of Indigenous Film Distribution, the South African distributor. “What’s really noteworthy about the Genie nominations is that it places the film right up there with Jean-Marc Vallée’s Café de Flore, which received 13 nominations and David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method, which received 11 nominations. It’s a great achievement for a great South African film.”

The awards will be announced in Toronto on Thursday, 8 March. Bang Bang Club is available in South Africa on DVD.

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