Fish Hoek film-maker Uga Carlini, who made the movie, Alison, has won the 2018 World of Women’s Cinema Award at the WOW Film Fair Middle East, held in Dubai.
Alison tells the story of Alison Botha, who in 1994 at the age of 27 was abducted, raped, stabbed and left for dead. She survived and went on to become a motivational speaker and author.
Carlini is the president of Towerkop Creations, which specialises in female-driven heroine stories. The announcement of the WOW award win, was made on Thursday, March 22.
The WOW festival rewards the talents of women producers, directors, writers, editors and cinematographers in the international film industry.
Carlini was chosen out of 300 global entries. As part of her prize, she will get to pitch her next project to Hollywood through ipitch.tv.
Carlini’s past achievement’s include the 2017 MUSE Writer’s Guild of South Africa Award for Best Screenplay; nomination for five awards at last year’s South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs); the International Humanitarian Platinum Award for Best Documentary at the World Humanitarian Film Awards in 2016 and Best Documentary at the Asia Pacific International Film Festival, also in 2016.
Carlini spoke to the False Bay Echo from Sun City on Saturday March 24, from this year’s Saftas award ceremony – the equivalent, she says, of the South African Oscars – where she was both a judge and presenter.
The WOW award, she said, was a storyteller’s dream and she was humbled and thrilled that Alison’s story was now reaching the rest of the world.
“For me to be the film-maker and storyteller for this has been incredible but to then know that this story travels is the ultimate blessing and more than I could ever have dreamt,” she said.
She said she felt she was telling a story that could truly make a difference. “For 80 minutes this story can mean something to somebody, and even if it’s short-lived, if it can be a reminder to somebody about hope always being there, then I will take that.”
She said she was deeply grateful to the heroine of the story, Alison, and to everyone who had been part of the making the film, as well as to all the people who had subsequently come into her life.
Carlini’s dress for the 2018 Saftas event was made by Hendrik Vermeulen of Hendrik Vermeulen Couture, of Simon’s Town.
“I have never been more in love with a dress; this is simply, wearing art,” she said. Vermeulen is celebrating 20 years in the industry, 10 years of his own current couture business and his 6th wedding anniversary to partner Jean-Daniel Vermeulen.
He said the dress’s nude/gold background was inspired by this year’s Safta theme, “Our Stories are Gold”.
The black lace represents Carlini’s stories tattooed on her skin and the gold touches on the dress’s neckline denoting those stories she had brought into the light.