Juno Films Curation and Strategy

South African Director Jahmil X.T. Qubeka weaves a breathless Western-style epic from the life of legendary Apartheid outlaw John Kepe.

Juno Films has acquired the exclusive North American rights to Sew The Winter To My Skin by South African director Jahmil X.T. Qubeka (Of Good Report). The film premiered at TIFF and is South Africa’s Best Foreign Film contender. The film will open in NYC in 2019 followed by a national rollout in theaters across the US, digital, educational and home video.Based on a true story, John Kepe was an Apartheid-era folk hero who proclaimed himself the  “Samson of the Boschberg.” For decades, Kepe stole livestock and other goods from white colonist farmers and shared his spoils with the impoverished Indigenous population. He inevitably became a political threat to the very fabric of the ruling colonial society. He escaped capture for 12 years before he was brought before a court and sentenced to death for a murder that he might or might not have committed. Sew the Winter to My Skin is a keenly observed epic-adventure drama that captures the horrors of South Africa’s racist colonial regime. Rejecting dialog, Jahmil X.T. Qubeka relies on an immersive score and visual cues and through his evocative formal choices, probes, as he says, "mankind’s inherent need to feed into mythologies that conveniently suit the order of the day.".

The deal was negotiated between Elizabeth Sheldon, Juno’s CEO and co-founder, and Philipp Hoffman, founder of Rushlake Media. “Jahmil X.T. Qubeka’s film weaves the best formal elements of a thriller with the universal themes of oppression, poverty and the quest for freedom and dignity,” says Elizabeth Sheldon. “This is a powerful film that audiences will remember.” Philipp Hoffman comments, “I’m very happy that Sew The Winter To My Skin found a home in North America with Juno Films and that Elizabeth and her team will pave the way to big screens across the country.” Qubeka adds that, “Elizabeth understands the power of film to bring new stories to an American audience. She will be a strong advocate for the story of John Kepe.”



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