South African & Irish Film Treaty Signed

The Irish and South African Ministers of Arts have signed a co-production filmmaking treaty. The treaty will provide the two countries with access to filmmaking opportunities. Minister Paul Mashatile (South Africa) and Minister Jimmy Dennihan (Ireland) sign the treaty on behalf of their respective countries.

The treaty was sign at the South African Pavilion at the Cannes Film Festival. The ceremony was attended by government officials from both countries, filmmakers, media and industry buyers and distributors.

On signing the agreement the South African Minister for Arts, Paul Mashatile, said "I am pleased to be signing this agreement with Ireland. The creative industry, which includes film, forms part of South Africa's drive to use the Arts to tell our own stories and more importantly create sustainable employment. This partnership will bring new opportunities for the talent that we have in our country, so that they and the industry, reach its full potential. It will also allow creatives from both countries to share experiences and jointly develop content"

Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, said "Co-production agreements matter because they open up new territories for film makers to explore and exploit. Today's agreement aims to allow Irish film makers and production companies to forge closer links with their South African counterparts, for the benefit of both parties. South Africa has a growing film production industry, with recent box office successes to its name, and I would like to see closer links between Ireland and South Africa in growing our joint film sectors into the future."

Both South Africa and Ireland have a strong tradition of telling authentic national stories, discovering talent and producing award-winning films. Award winning films include Tsotsi, My Left Foot, Skin and Once.

The Treaty aims to facilitate greater co-production opportunities between the two countries enabling both to benefit from joint access to local tax incentives, national film funding and broadcaster and regional subsidies.

Irish South African Co-production to date include John Boorman's Country of My Skull, Tara Road which starred Andie McDowell. A more recent Irish-South African co-production was The Good Man which was produced by Irish production company Treasure Entertainment (Man About Dog).