THINKING STRINGS MEDIA specialises in the production of creative, character driven documentaries for the international festival circuit and broadcast market. We have just released our first international feature documentary “Buddha in Africa” in co-production with Momento films in Sweden. This powerful documentary that follows the intimate story of a Malawian teenager growing up in a Chinese Buddhist orphanage in Africa, was recently awarded “Best South African Documentary” at the Durban International Film Festival (DIFF). DIFF is included as a Documentary Feature Qualifying Festival by the Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences, which means that Buddha in Africa, automatically qualifies for consideration for an Oscar nomination.
The film had its World premiere at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in April, and opened the Encounters Documentary Festival in Cape Town and Johannesburg in June where it received a Backsberg Encounters Audience Award.  It was also in the official selection at this year’s Sydney International Film Festival in June.  The film will show at the Hilton Arts Festival and has its European Premiere coming up at the Visioni dal Mondo International Documentary Festival in Milan. It will also show at the Unicef Innocenti Film Festival in Florence in October to commemorate 30 Years of the signing of the Convention on the rights of the child.  Knysna residents can also look forward to a seeing the film at the Knysna film festival at the end October.
The film has received support from several prestigious funds including the the IDFA Bertha Fund in the Netherlands, Hot Docs Blue Ice fund and the Alter Cine Foundation in Canada, Chicken and Egg Pictures in New York and the South African National Film and Video Foundation and the KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission. AfriDOCS is the African broadcast partner. CAT and Docs are representing the film internationally.


Watch a few of our videos to see what we’ve been up to in recent years.



HD Documentary: 93 min Feature/ 52 min Broadcast 

(South Africa/Sweden) 2019 

Thinking Strings Media & Momento Film

International Sales: CAT & Docs

“Best South African Documentary”

Durban International Film Festival

Opening Night film: Encounters Documentary Festival

World Premiere: Hot Docs Canadian Documentary Festival

Australian Premiere:Sydney International Film Festival

Enock Alu, a Malawian teenager growing up in a Chinese Buddhist orphanage, feels torn between his African roots and Chinese upbringing.  Once the star performer with dreams of becoming a martial arts hero like Jet Li, Enock, in his final year of school, has to make some tough decisions about his future.  Will he return to his relatives in his home village or study abroad in Taiwan? Set against China's expanding influence on the continent, Buddha in Africa provides a unique insight into the forces of cultural soft power on the identity and imagination of an African boy and his school friends growing up between two cultures.

KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, South Africa

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