30 June 2012

East Africa: Local Films Market Affected By Kanumba's Demise

THE demise of the prominent movie actor Steven Charles Kanumba two months ago has affected the film market in Tanzania due to the slide down of the copy sales in both internal and external market.

Speaking exclusively to the 'Daily News' on Wednesday, Steps Entertainment's Marketing Manager Kambarage Ignatius attributed the gradual sales crush on the demise of the once Bongo Movie icon, Steven Kanumba, whose life was cut short tragically in April, this year.

Kambarage appreciated that Kanumba had a big fan base compared to other actors in Tanzania, therefore his currently absence in the market has depreciated the industry providing that he was the most fancied actor in the East Africa film Industry.

"Steps Entertainment has been distributing Tanzanian films in Africa particularly in East African countries, we stopped all activities related to film distributions and sales during the funeral but when we restarted working slowly sagging was observed as time went on," explained Kambarage.

Mentioning dominants actors in the market, Kambarage said despite of having some actors who are marketable in the firm like Vicent Kigosi (Ray), Irene Uwoya and Steven Jacob (JB), the hole left by Kanumba will take a long while to be covered due to his appeal on the market.

According to Kambarage there are two new films of which one titled Ndoa Yangu mainly casted by the late Kanumba before his sudden demise expected to retain the market when released next month and Love and Power from The Great Film Production which is on the initial production processes.

He also revealed that Kanumba's 'Last Word' documentary will be projected during Saba Saba International Trade Fairs. The documentary among all other activities done by Kanumba on his all life time will include his last word.

On the amendment of the Copyright Act as proposed by the Ministry of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports, which recommends introduction of tax stickers on the film CDs, Mr Kambarage urged the government to concentrate on ensuring piracies are sued regardless of the miner size of the crime they are involved in.

"We are very ok with the introduction of that sticker in the light of the fact that pirates can be easily identified whenever they are arraigned before the court of law, but it is like the way importation of the condom fails to reduce the number of HIV victims, this also may fail to deliver expected goals," opined Kambarage

Kambarage added that introduction of that act should be simultaneous to heavier penalties against the culprits.He suggested that the time of issuing tax stickers from Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) as projected by the ministry should be abridged so as to give distributors more timely access to the market and avoid unnecessary bureaucracy.

Local film market has been growing despite the competition from foreign films which are believed to be of more quality. It has been observed that the late Kanumba contributed a lot in the development of the industry by turning Tanzanians' attitudes towards locally produced films.

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