South African production outfits have been struggling recently but at least one of the country's facilities companies appears to be thriving. Johannesburg and Cape Town-based Sasani Communications has reported that earnings almost doubled from $3.2m (R22.1m) to $6.2m (R42.8m) for the year to June 30. Revenues increased 8.4% to $46m (R319m).
The group owns MCC - The Movie Camera Company, an agent of Kodak stock which also supplies Arriflex cameras and other equipment; Logical Designs, which supplies Panavision cameras and grip equipment; The Film Lab, which is the only full service film lab in Africa; post-production facilities The Video Lab, ZSE TV and The Worx; Sasani Studios, which offers several sound stages; sound post-production company Chris Fellows Sound Studios; The House Next Door, which supplies graphics and CGI; and location management company Locations@Africa.
Amongst productions Sasani has been involved in are I Dreamed Of Africa, The Ghost And The Darkness, The Little Unicorn, Merlin and Dazzle.
Commenting on the results Sasani CEO Sandra Gordon said: "South Africa should take its cue from Canada and Australia and then we could become the next Hollywood. But this can't be until a significant investment is injected into all areas of content development."
Leading the way, Sasani recently invested $425,000 through a combination of cash and facilities in domestic actioner High Explosive, produced by Harry Alan Towers and starring Patrick Bergin. The company hopes to invest in further projects by the end of the year.