Oscar Pistorius Movie Sparks Outrage: Is It Justified?

The Oscar Pistorius trial had the world, particularly South Africans, glued to their screens as details about the murder of Reeva Steenkamp unfolded. In July 2016, Pistorius was sentenced to 6 years in prison for the crime and while most people thought we wouldn’t hear about the story for a while, a trailer for the Oscar Pistorius movie has made the topic relevant again.

Mention of Oscar Pistorius had been minimal following the sentence, with only 4,562 online mentions in 2017. After the trailer surfaced on 2 October, social media has been abuzz about the topic, accounting for 86% of mentions about him for the year.

Oscar Pistorius Online Conversation

  • 77% of mentions stemmed from South Africa, followed by the US (7%) and the UK with 5%. The remaining 11% were by individuals in other regions.
  • Twitter was the most popular platform for opinion sharing and accounted for 93% of total mentions. News sources contributed 3% to volumes and other online platforms made up the remaining 4%.

The trailer triggered outrage from South Africans who have taken their opinions to social media. The majority of posts were neutral as the majority of people reshared news about the trailer.

Opinions about the Oscar Pistorius Movie

Negativity largely centred around opinions about Oscar himself, however, others have voiced their annoyance at the American production company (Lifetime) for creating the film.


The most prominent complaint though, is that the film was produced without the consent of either of the families. Numerous individuals voiced their anger at Lifetime for not consulting with the Steenkamp or Pistorius families regarding the portrayal of the characters or even requesting permission to shoot the film. The public has particularly jumped to the defence of the Steenkamp family, with media outlets highlighting this as the most noteworthy news.

“They were never consulted. Nobody asked their input. In fact, they never even knew until now that a movie had been made.” – Tania Koen, the lawyer for Barry and June Steenkamp

But, do filmmakers have a legal obligation to do so? According to legislature, no.  There are no privacy laws preventing filmmakers from depicting real people, so long as the portrayal is not defamatory.

“If a film maker creates a film depicting a real person in a way that would lower the reputation of that person, and the film is released, then the film maker may be liable for defamation.” – Art Law

While the movie is a dramatised retelling of the story, the trailer suggests that Reeva is portrayed in a favourable light. For this reason, it’s unlikely that the Steenkamp family will be able to take legal action.

However, on 3 October, Carl Pistorius (Oscar’s brother) confirmed that he will be suing the producers for misrepresenting his brother by ignoring facts to lend itself to a more compelling movie.

Time will tell if the Pistorius family will win against Lifetime, but my prediction is that Lifetime did its due diligence before even going into pre-production. The ethics around making money off of the tragedy is another conversation, but from a legal perspective, it appears that the narrative has remained fairly true to the original reports of what happened.

The film is scheduled for release in the US in November but there is no indication whether or not the film will be released in South Africa.

What are your thoughts? Tweet me @fantomdan

Resources and Additional Reading

Keeping Up With the Kandasamys (2017) Review

Last night I attended the premiere of Keeping Up With the Kandasamys and was beyond impressed with the whole experience. It’s not often that I rave about a South African film, but this one is well worth the watch.

The Premiere

Kyle Deutsch and DJ Deemo movie premiere
Kyle Deutsch and DJ Deemo being interviewed by ANN 7 and SABC News.

I’ve only been to a handful of premieres so I didn’t quite know what to expect, but last night’s event was impressive. The Johannesburg event took place at Ster Kinekor in Cedar Square (Fourways). Guests were welcomed with a red carpet, photographers, film crew, grand spread of food and drinks, which certainly made me feel like royalty if only for the night. A great playlist kept the vibe spirited and lively creating an atmosphere of excitement for the night’s festivities.


Jailoshini Naidoo Premiere
Jailoshini Naidoo who plays the meddlesome Jennifer Kandsamy

About an hour before the screening, the talented cast made their entrance and were nothing short of glamorous. To kick things off, guests were treated to a performance by Kyle Deutsch who sang one of the main songs from the film’s soundtrack. DJ Deemo also made an appearance and spent quite a bit of time being interviewed by news reporters and taking pictures with fans.


Mariam Bassa
Mariam Bassa who plays Aya

Then the cast took to the red carpet dressed to the nines, posing for photos with true movie star prestige. The cast includes some familiar faces from the Indian entertainment industry including Jailoshini Naidoo, Maeshni Naicker, Mishqah Parthiephal, Madhushan Singh, Koobeshen Naidoo, Rajesh Gopie and Mariam Bassa. The entire event came together perfectly, making for a wonderful evening.



The Movie

I’d seen the trailer and was hopeful it would be good, but it exceeded my expectations. Set in Chatsworth, the film opens a window into the lifestyle and subculture of modern-day Indian South Africans; their aspirations, dreams and challenges. The plot centres around two rival mothers who discover their children are having a secret relationship. They then decide to take matters into their own hands and work together to try to break the two up in a number of hilariously conniving ways. The light-hearted narrative is funny, charming and relatable to all. Not only is the story endearing, but I was blown away by the overall production value proving that the South African film industry is certainly alive and well. This is without a doubt a movie that everyone involved should be proud of.

Keeping Up With the Kandsamays is an absolute must-see for all South Africans. The film will be officially launched in cinemas nationwide on 3 March 2017. Do yourself a favour and go see it!

Watch the Trailer here:

Social Media Links:

Twitter: @kandasamysmovie

Instagram: @kandasamysmovie

Facebook: www.facebook.com/kandasamysmovie

Don’t Miss the Amazing Mo Magic!

After years as an Engineer, ‘Mo Magic’ decided to pursue his dream of entertaining by turning his passion into his full-time career. He now entertains audiences through magic, mentalism and comedy. Following the success of the weekly prime time TV show on SABC3, South African magician Mo has embarked on a nationwide theatre tour. From the 20 to 23 October 2016, Mo will be performing at The Fringe at The Joburg Theatre, and I was astounded by the show.

Mo Magic and Fantomdan
Mo even gives attendees the opportunity to meet him after the show!

Not only was I, along with a highly amused audience, genuinely amazed by the magic tricks he performed, but his personality was a key contributor to the show. His charming demeanour and witty sense of humour make the experience incredibly entertaining and engaging. Nothing about the 90-minute performance is predictable and will undoubtedly leave you astonished and amazed.

I also enjoyed the intimacy of the theatre. The Fringe, located at The Joburg Theatre, allows for a very personable experience, which is exactly why Mo started his theatre tour. The size of the space is perfect for seeing everything that happens on stage, without feeling closed in. I always dread shows that involve audience participation, but if you were selected, you were not embarrassed or made a fool of at all.

I’m glad Mo decided to leave the engineering profession because show business is definitely his calling. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed the performance so don’t miss the opportunity to see the show! It’s running for a limited time only so if you’re looking for a night of magic, mentalism and comedy, Mo Magic is a must.

Tickets for Mo Magic cost R150 per person and can be purchased through www.webtickets.co.za or www.joburgtheatre.com. If you use the word “Magic” when ordering, you get R50 off your purchase! No under 6’s permitted and no admittance after the performance has begun. The show runs from Thursday to Saturday at 19h30 with a Sunday matinee at 14h00. The Fringe at Joburg Theatre is located at 163 Civic Boulevard, Braamfontein.

Visit www.momagic.co.za for more information. Also, be sure to follow him on social media.

Mo Magic Joburg