Windhoek-MultiChoice Namibia is celebrating 25 years of bringing great entertainment to Namibians and is taking local television producers along for the ride.
The company continued its celebrations by recently hosting an information session at its office in Windhoek with the aim of encouraging Namibian producers to submit their content to channels on the DStv and GOtv platforms.
The session was aimed at television and radio producers looking for opportunities to extend the distribution of their content and brands.
Cheryl Uys-Allie, regional head of content for MultiChoice, led the session and shared her own experiences as a producer trying to sell her ideas and programming to TV channels, and trying to sell channels to DStv. “It all comes down to whether the market has an appetite for your channel or your programme,” she explained.
Studies have shown that local content is key to local viewers and MultiChoice’s content provider, M-Net, has been at the forefront of commissioning localized versions of popular shows like ‘Our Perfect Wedding’, with such shows produced in Kenya, Angola and Zambia, as well as localizing international formats like Big Brother and The Voice across the continent.
M-Net has also successfully produced hundreds of hours of films and series for the Africa Magic channels, which are available on both the DStv and GOtv platforms.
In Namibia, MultiChoice Namibia announced the launch of the Namibian drama The Third Will on Zambezi Magic as of June 5. International channels are also moving towards localising some of their shows by co-producing with local filmmakers, as well as licensing more local content.
Producers who attended the session were taken through the business of television, particularly the ‘how to’s’ of pitching a programme to a TV channel, as well as pitching a channel to a platform.
“There are plenty of great untold Namibian stories and talented filmmakers. The main challenge for local producers is access to funding,” Uys-Allie said.
“One way to stimulate the local film industry is to encourage advertiser funded programmes (AFPs), where local business can gain exposure not only in Namibia, but across the region, by partnering with local filmmakers.”
Uys-Allie also encouraged the attendants to submit their films and proposals directly to the channels, adding: “Growing a local film industry is about coming together as a nation, to encourage, support and fund the industry by partnering with various stakeholders and not leaving it only up to the filmmakers. Namibian filmmakers have the talent and great stories to tell, and MultiChoice wants to tell your stories.”