Kalushi: The Solomon Mahlangu Story, written and directed by Mandla Dube and produced by Walter Ayres and Mandla Dube is scheduled for national release on the cinema circuit on 10 March 2017.
The film won the Rapid Lion award at the 2016 Rapid Lion International Film Festival and screened at the Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) where it was hailed by audiences and critics alike. The film went on to screen at the Cannes Marche 2016 and the KykNET Silwerskermfees and has been invited to screen at numerous international festivals.
The all South African cast includes Thabo Rametsi (ITV’s Wild at Heart series) in the pivotal role of “Mahlangu”, alongside Thabo Malema (The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency, helmed by The English Patient director, Anthony Mingella), Louw Venter (Semi-Soet, and Kite – alongside Samuel L. Jackson), Marcel van Heerden (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom), Welile Nzuza (Vehicle 19 with Paul Walker), Shika Budhoo, and introducing Pearl Thusi (USA TV series Quantico). Acclaimed poet and playwright, Dr. Gcina Mhlophe plays the role of Martha Mahlangu, and Kalushi’s brother, Lucas Mahlangu, served as a cultural advisor to the production.
The film tells the remarkable story of Solomon ‘Kalushi’ Mahlangu, a young man, largely forgotten by history, who became the voice of so many when nobody was listening to the country’s youth. At a time when youth uprisings were at their height, the young ‘kalushi’ would use his arrest and trial to speak for the masses who were being silenced at every turn. Sentenced to death at the age of 23, despite being innocent of the accusations against him, he refused to be silenced.
Kalushi is written and directed by Mandla Dube, takes us on a riveting journey of discovery during which we rediscover the contribution made by Mahlangu and those who moulded and inspired him. Filmed on location at many of the places where the events of Mahlangu’s life unfolded, including the gallows where he was put to death, Kalushi offers fascinating insights into the life of Mahlangu. Although a simple man, Mahlangu remains a role model for those who came after him and echoes of his sacrifice can be found in the current Fees Must Fall movement.
Check out the trailer below: