Magazine article Screen International

Versatile Snaps Up World Sales on Cannes Doc 'The State against Mandela and the Others' (Exclusive)

Magazine article Screen International

Versatile Snaps Up World Sales on Cannes Doc 'The State against Mandela and the Others' (Exclusive)

Article excerpt

Documentary reconstructs historic trial resulting in Nelson Mandela’s life sentence.

‘The State Against Mandela And The Others’

Paris-based company Versatile has snapped up world sales rights for feature documentary The State Against Mandela And The Others, ahead of its Special Screening premiere in Cannes next month.

The documentary reconstructs the Rivonia Trial, which took place in the suburbs of the South African city of Johannesburg from October 1963 to June 1964 and resulted in anti-apartheid campaigner Nelson Mandela being imprisoned for 27 years and eight months.

But rather than focusing on Mandela, it puts the spotlight on the stories of the other people who stood in the dock alongside the world-famous activist, and, like him faced, the death penalty.

The hybrid work combines archive audio recordings with animated reconstructions and contemporary interviews with the surviving defendants and lawyers as they listen to the audio files some 50 years later, to build up a picture of the battle that took place in the courtroom. …

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