Movie shooting kicks-off in Lesotho

MASERU — Shooting for the new movie, The Forgotten Kingdom, is set to begin in Lesotho on Monday.

The Forgotten Kingdom is a gripping story of a young man Atang who was born in Lesotho but grew up in Johannesburg with his father after his mother died.

Atang comes back to Lesotho 15 years later to bury his father.

He intends to make the burial as brief as possible so that he could return to Johannesburg.

But he then meets Lineo, his childhood sweetheart.

When Lineo leaves Maseru for Semonkong, Atang embarks on a journey to find her.

The film’s director Andrew Mudge told The Weekender that they will be shooting the summer part of the 100-minute film for the whole of March.

“We will be filming in Semonkong, Leribe, Sani Pass, Mokhotlong and Pitseng for a month,” Mudge said.

“We have done our casting for the summer season and the filming will start March 7 with 16 actors.”

He added: “We will be filming an average of three pages of the 98 pages of the script a day with one page consuming a minute in the film.”

Mudge said they had assembled an impressive crew made up of Americans, South Africans and Basotho.

“We have approximately 17 people making up the crew, half the size of a Hollywood movie crew,” Mudge said.

He said the second part of the film will be shot in July during the winter season.

Mudge said the roles for the main characters, Atang and Lineo, will be played by seasoned South African actors Zenzo Ngqobe and Nozipho Nkelemba.

“We casted five people from South Africa, two are originally from Lesotho, two have lived part of their lives in Lesotho and one is fluent with the Sesotho language but lives in South Africa while the rest of the cast are Basotho,” Mudge said.

“Lineo is going to be played by Nozipho Nkelemba who played Charlotte in Rhythm City. Atang is going to be played by Zenzo Ngqobe who has appeared in South African township film Tsotsi and plays Stone on Rhythm City.”

He said the search for Tau, one of the leading characters in the film, is finally over after they identified Lebo Ntsane from Hoohlo Primary School as the ideal candidate.

“It was a hustle to find the Tau character which is one of the vital characters of the film so we ran auditions in different primary schools in Maseru and three orphanages.

“Our search came to an end when a 12-year-old Lebo Ntsane of Hoohlo Primary School displayed raw acting ability and took the part of Tau,” Mudge said.

He added: “We also found another talented young Bohlokoa Ramalise from Tiny Tots School who will play the character of a herd boy named Sello who gets lost in the mountains and is afraid to find his way back home.”

Mudge said they were still to finish assembling the complete cast for the film.

“We are still to hold another set of call-backs for the winter filming. The second part of casting will take place during May but only for people who have been short-listed from the overall auditions that we conducted throughout the country,” he said.

Mudge said they need a total of 25 Sesotho-speaking characters in the film.

“The film will still provide a platform for individuals to be in a film because we will be finding extras,” he said.

He however said they will not have a specific day dedicated to recruiting the extras due to financial constraints.

“We will be putting the film as we go. We will not have people waiting in tents

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