KNYSNA NEWS - One of the films to be screened at the inaugural Knysna Film Festival has bagged a prestigious honourable mention in the Feature Documentary category at the 2019 Hollywood Independent Filmmaker Awards on 10 October.
The locally produced documentary Tin Soldiers by SA director/producer Odette Schwegler, shines a spotlight on the ultra-rare condition *fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva, or FOP, a catastrophic sabotage of the body's muscular skeletal system.
People of all ages who have to deal with this from birth are referred to as "tin soldiers" in the movie – living in bodies that make movement nearly impossible.
"We are deeply grateful to everyone who helped make this film a reality and most especially to the FOP warriors who trusted us with their stories," said Schwegler of the accolade. This is a double victory to date for the movie, as the Jozi Film Festival also named Tin Soldiers a winner with honourable mention earlier this month.
The judges of the award are located in the heart of Hollywood and range from former studio executives and talent managers to award-winning independent filmmakers, with a combined experience of over 40 years in the entertainment industry.
"This is a tough international competition and it's a massive honour to have our local work acknowledged on an international stage," said Schwegler, who took her Blink Production film crew to Europe, North and South America, with filming also taking place in the Western Cape.
The film held its world premiere screening at the Jozi Film Festival to much acclaim on 5 October and has hit news headlines because of its compelling story.
* Those born with FOP eventually form a second skeleton as muscle, ligament and tissue slowly turn to bone. It's a world where injury and even inflammation could spark rapid bone growth – the joints locking over time, cruelly sending victims into a spiral towards immobility.
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