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Theatre packed for premiere of 'Kalushi'

By Patience Bambalele | 2017-03-06 14:33:10.0

  • Pearl Thuli. Picture credit: Thulani Mbele.

  • Thabo Rametsi.. Picture credit: Thulani Mbele.

  • Pearl Thuli. Picture credit: Thulani Mbele.

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There was not enough space to swing a cat at the movie premiere of Kalushi: The Story of Solomon Mahlangu.

The Saturday afternoon premiere was attended by government ministers, celebrities, fashionistas and ordinary people at Ster-Kinekor in Pretoria.

Movie lovers came out in numbers and flooded the reception area of the movie house, hoping to snap pictures of the celebrities on the red carpet.

The film is about the life of former uMkhonto weSizwe cadre Solomon Mahlangu, who is portrayed by stage and television actor Thabo Rametsi.

The film features Pearl Thusi, who plays Mahlangu's girlfriend Brenda; Gcina Mhlophe, who plays his mother Martha; Fumani Shilubana, who portrays Mahlangu's brother Lucas; and Thabo Malema and Jafta Mamabolo.

Mandlakayise Dube, the writer and co-producer of the movie, said after nine years of working on the film, he was excited that it would finally be seen in cinemas.

"I want to thank the family for trusting us with the story of Solomon Mahlangu," he said.

Rametsi said he was excited that the film - which was shot three years ago - has finally hit screens.

"The most exciting thing is that chief Lucas Mahlangu, Solomon's brother, is here to see his brother's story being relived. Acting in this film taught me a lot about South African stories and history."

Kalushi shows how initially Mahlangu never wanted to take part in the struggle . He wanted to study and become a street vendor .

"However, due to the [police] brutality that he experienced just for selling sweets on the trains, he left the country [in 1976]. He went to Angola and Mozambique with his four comrades, where he was trained as an MK soldier.

"He returned to South Africa and in June 1977, he and Mondy Motloung and George Mahlangu were arrested in Goch Street, Johannesburg, after a gun battle with police. He was found guilty and executed two years later.

Thusi said it was a great experience for her, as a young black woman, to be involved in such a story.

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