An exciting partnership forged in the run up to the 2019 edition of RapidLion – The South African International Film Festival will see the Dutch-based international short film initiative Shortcutz Amsterdam hold its first screenings at The Bioscope in Johannesburg this December.

The three-way deal brokered by RapidLion will see The Bioscope play host to this globetrotting showcase with screenings from 7 to 13 December 2018 in Maboneng before further screenings on 7 March 2019 during RapidLion’s run at The Market Theatre.

Shortcutz Amsterdam showcases Dutch films from rising filmmakers via its weekly sessions based at the Arts Society De Kring in Amsterdam.

A jury made up of respected names in the Dutch and European film industries judges all films screened at Shortcutz Amsterdam in order to select the best monthly films. These are shown around the world through Shortcutz’s network of 30 partners, which includes global film festivals such as RapidLion, and special events.

“When I met the Shortcutz Amsterdam team in Utrecht,” says RapidLion festival director Eric Miyeni, “I just knew that this project would be great for Johannesburg.”

After watching these films during the December screenings at The Bioscope, Johannesburg audiences will join 19 other cities across four continents by casting their vote for the best of the seven best Shortcutz Amsterdam films of 2018. The winning film will be awarded at the Shortcutz Amsterdam Annual Awards on 20 January 2019.

The films to be screened include Bullet Time, Sjaak’s Wife Died, So He Needs To Say Something, Girl On A Mission, Otherland, Hitchcock, Hitchcock and others.

“As the Bioscope, it is great to work with a festival like RapidLion and engage with other film initiatives out there,” says Bioscope co-founder and director Russell Grant. “The Shortcutz package is great for us because our audiences can get to see what people are doing around the world and maybe a similar thing could be done in Johannesburg in the future.”

João Carlos Rodrigues, the creative director of Shortcutz, says the three entities, namely RapidLion, The Bioscope and Shortcutz Amsterdam represent good prospects for not only growing audiences, but developing overall filmic knowledge. “In RapidLion, you have a festival that has demonstrated its potential for mass appeal, while in The Bioscope, you have a venue that has grown a cult audience,” he said. “Bringing these two together to present our programme can only lead to a deeper understanding of various film cultures.”

Miyeni agrees, saying, “In order for us to grow, we have to think of programmes that benefit filmmakers and film audiences alike.  We have to find ways to shape filmmakers and moviegoers of the future. With this considered, this three-way partnership is a perfect fit for RapidLion.”


  • The 2019 RapidLion – The South African International Film Festival will take place from the 1st to the 10th of March 2019 at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg.
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