Television

Nelson Mandela Doc Series From South African Director Mandla Dube Boarded By Dogwoof — Cannes Market

A five-part doc series exploring the life of late South African President and freedom fighter Nelson Mandela is being readied with his personal archivists providing material. Dogwoof has boarded Mandela: Life (working title) and will launch it the Cannes Market this month.

Directed by South African director Mandla Dube, the series will focus on Mandela’s extraordinary life and specifically the dramatic 1984-1994 period, known as the ‘deadly decade’ during which thousands died in political violence.

It is being billed as “Nelson Mandela’s own story ‘in his own words, narrated in his voice’ and is being made in collaboration with the archive and research team Nelson Mandela personally authorized in 2004, Verne Harris, Razia Saleh and Sahm Venter. They are aiming to make the most rigorously-researched, in-depth and personal long-form doc on his life.

Mandela began the ‘deadly decade’ imprisoned for life for conspiring to overthrow the state, but was freed in 1990 and went on to establish the country’s first democratic elections in 1994, winning the vote and subsequently leading as President until 1999.

The series has been authorized by the Nelson Mandela Foundation to archival recreate Mandela’s voice from his personal archive and feature previously unreleased material and unpublished letters he wrote while in jail. The foundation, which is the custodian of Mandela’s personal archive, has granted long-time creative partner and publisher of five books with and about him, the right to create the doc series.

Development has been ongoing for two years and is being readied for global release on Freedom Day (April 27) next year, which will be the 31st anniversary of the 1994 election.

Mandela: Life director Dube, whose Netflix action film Silverton Siege is about the moment that sparked the Free Mandela movement, recently secured financing from the Industrial Corporation of South Africa for his next six films, as we revealed last month.

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