Deviating from our normal line of work, at the end of June, Pontact coordinated
the staging of the CNN Multichoice African Journalist of the Year Awards
at Safari Park Hotel. It was the first time in 10 years that this event
has been held outside of South Africa, a great honour for Kenya, as it
also marked the 25th Anniversary year of CNN. Instrumental in bringing
the show to Kenya was old friend and colleague, Mark West, who last worked
with Jenny in 1993 on the live broadcast of the URTNA Awards. Mark has
gone on to be the most sought after Producer of extravaganzas such
as numerous Miss South Africa and Miss World pageants, and the Opening
Ceremony of the Cricket World Cup in South Africa.
Co-inciding with the CNN event was the return of Faith Landmarks Ministries
from Richmond, Virginia, for their annual All Faiths Crusade, this time
being held in Nairobi.
This years documentary crews have come mostly from Canada and France,
the most interesting being The Great Savannah Race whose intention
was to collar seven wildebeeste in Serengeti and track their progress
on the Migration to Masai Mara. TANAPA refused them permission to tranquilize
the animals in Tanzania and so, no problem, they would track
them from Kenya to Tanzania. The wildebeest began their return Migration
on time, then decided it was too soon and turned back to finish off the
grass in the Mara. It promises to be a very interesting story.
We are proud to be associated with both National Geographic and History
Channels, the latter for whom we filmed some interviews. In November we
assisted Al Is On Production and Saunders Darrow Smithson of London in
re-constructing the Nairobi Bomb Blast for the National Geographic series
Seconds from Disaster, with all the interior scenes being
shot in Pontacts offices.
DIE WEISSE MASSAI
At the invitation of Constantin Film, Jenny and Ben went
to Munich to attend the premiere of Die Weisse Massai on 8th September.
They stayed for a week and met many film friends both old and new. It
is a beautiful and dramatic film and shows Kenya and the Samburu tribespeople
at their most stunning. It was selected for a Gala screening at the Toronto
Film Festival and we hope there will soon be a US distributor for the
English sub-titled version.
Meanwhile, ticket sales in Germany have reached the 2.2 million mark and
Setting up the first Kenya Film Commission has been a labour of love and
worthy of its own "making of" documentary. Hopefully,
a CEO will be in place in the first 2 weeks of January, 2006, and then
we can start acting on the myriad of tasks awaiting us.
In the recent Cabinet re-shuffle which followed the Referendum for a new
Constitution, we acquired a new Minister of Information & Communications
and Permanent Secretary who both have a refreshingly helpful and enthusiastic
approach to the film industry. Let us hope we can deliver
Robert joined Pontact as our overseas Consultant only two
years ago and his advice and input to Pontact Productions has been invaluable.
He came to Kenya in October, as usual, at short notice Im
arriving on Thursday, can I borrow some wheels? and very independent.
He fell ill but said he preferred to wait till he felt well enough to
travel back to Italy and be treated by his own doctors. Well, this never
happened. He collapsed, necessitating major surgery followed by a week
in ICU at the Aga Khan Hospital. He was out of ICU and, against all odds,
making an amazing recovery when he suddenly died of a cardiac arrest on
8th November, 2005. A fine Producer and Director, he will be missed by
all his friends and colleagues in Kenya.
Pontact Productions EPZ Ltd has been based at Rafiki Industrial
Park for just over a year now, although "The White Masai" production
office was at Baraka Studios and "Winterreise" worked out of
Our permanent staff consists of Jenny Pont, James Munga (Accountant),
Joram Njenga (Asst.Accountant), Michael Karanja (Transport), and Yusuf
Rafiki EPZ Industrial Park
Outer Ring road
P.O. Box 64918
Office switchboard +254-20-8562386
Office direct landline: +254-20-6752166
Office mobile +254-720 030870
Jenny direct +254-20-8561463
Office fax +254-20 8562133
Jenny +254-733 602431 or +254-722 221179
Joram +254-724 334110 or +254-735 836560
Maggie +254-720 796998 or +254-737 227037
Michael Karanja +254-727 107700 or 0735 107700
Yusuf +254-722 213667
Naomi +254-721 884749