Lead actor Nakhane Touré walked away with the Best Actor award at the prestigious Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) for his role in the much-acclaimed local movie The Wound.
The star-studded event took place over the weekend. The wound premiered in African at The Playhouse in Durban where it walked away with deserved acknowledgment on Saturday night.
In addition, John Trengrove got the Best Director gong for the movie. He was full of praise for his cast and crew for the outstanding effort they put in the movie.
“I am so grateful to the incredible cast and crew who put their faith and trust in this journey. This film is a testament to their efforts. I want to dedicate this award to the silent and faceless queers throughout the African continent who face insurmountable obstacles every day in a struggle for identity and dignity.”
While the film has received much love from film critics and the general public Nakhane has been attacked over his role. According to the actor, he has been called a ‘sell out of the Xhosa culture’. He has also been a victim of homophobic slurs.
Speaking Mail&Guardian at the time, Nakhane said he wasn’t ready for the kind of backlash he got.
“I had prepared myself for a backlash of some sort, but I didn’t know it would be quite this homophobic. I knew it would be cultural and that people would be mad about that, but not this homophobic. But I kind of understand why people are mad; why they’re so defensive of their culture. It is, after all, their culture. But it is also my culture.”
Notably, The Wound tells the story of Kwanda‚ a gay factory worker‚ who goes from the city to the rural area of his family’s origin to be circumcised in a traditional rites-of-passage ceremony.
The story further portrays the Xhosa initiation ritual and the intimate relationship that develops between three men undergoing the ceremony. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and has received massive international recognition.
Earlier this year, the movie struck a multi-million rand distribution deal with French distributor Pyramide Films. According to The Wound‘s producer Elias Ribeir, the deal is worth a whopping R2.5 million.