Change Is Here

The 4th Annual SA Eco Film Festival recently returned to Cape Town. In light of a tumultuous 2016, this year’s theme is #ChangeIsHere. 

This year’s program was bursting with engaging and thought provoking film content from South Africa and across the globe. Festival organiser, Dougie Dudgeon, explains that this year’s festival aimed to explore what changes are needed, and how small, personal change can affect the world for the better. 

The Festival highlights issues that affect us all, whilst introducing participants, filmmakers and audience members alike to sustainable living choices and life style changes that can be implemented in everyday life. 

We managed to catch up with Mattia Trabucchi and Jay Mac, two participating directors in the 2017 Festival. They share background on their films and explain the work that went into making them.

Kayabike, Mattia Trabucchi

Mattia Trabucchi is an independant documentary filmmaker with a PhD in Restoration Ecology. 

Whilst working on an environmental research project at the University of Stellenbosch, his cycling took him to Kayamandi where he learned of a program that uses bikes to empower the youth and improve their environment in the area. 

“One day, I took my bike and rode to Kayamandi, the township close to Stellenbosch. I found a guy named Songo on a bike, who told me he founded an NGO that was teaching the kids of Kayamandi how to ride a BMX and mountain bikes.” says Trabucchi. “For me it was the perfect excuse to know their reality…So I started cycling with them and knowing the reality of the township and the love, beauty and inspiration you can find in this place, despite all the limits and constraint they are subjected to.” 

Trabucchi says he is in a constant search for the truth; a pursuit that brought him into the world of filmmaking and the making of Kayabike, “I entered the world of documentary filmmaking through curiosity, I use it as a tool for the exploration of reality. I am particularly interested in exploring environmental and social justice issues, and my experience in Kayamandi gave me just that opportunity.” 

View the trailor and synopsis of Kayabike here. 

What Is Real – The Story Of Jivamukti Yoga, Jay Mac

Jay Mac, the director of What Is Real – The Story Of Jivamukti Yoga, is a South African ‘renaissance man’ in every sense. Mac is the co-owner of AIR Yoga in Cape Town, a Jivamukti yoga teacher, a vegan chef, and the Creative Director of his own agency, Great Scott.  

With What Is Real, his first feature length documentary, he adds both film director and producer to his list of accolades 

“I gave up being a Creative Director to become a ‘full-time’ Yoga teacher, but found myself drawn to both! And then the opportunity to make this film came along, and I thought let’s do it! That’s the irony and that’s the charm of the Yoga Practice we call life,” says Mac. “My teachers Sharon Gannon and David Life inspired me to create the film. I saw how many lives they've helped, including mine, through their message of compassion and freedom for all beings. I felt this inspirational story needed to be told.”

In addition to attracting outside producers to aid the making of the film, Mac also successfully crowdfunded part of the budget, something he plans to do again for his next film project. “I will begin pre-production and another IndieGoGo funding campaign towards the middle of the year.” says Mac, “This time I will be exploring the other side of our being. The side which resides in our sleep and what powers can we possess in the waking state if we are able to harness this other side of ourselves.”

View the trailor and synopsis of What Is Real – The Story Of Jivamukti Yoga here.