Gordon urges Celtic to use late winner for league boost

first_imgGoalkeeper Craig Gordon has called on Celtic to use the feel-good factor from picking up a late victory against Rosenborg to get back to winning ways domestically.Substitute Leigh Griffiths struck a last-minute winner as the Hoops defeated the Norwegian champions in their Europa League opener.That result ensures Celtic currently top their Europa group, but in the Premiership they currently sit five points behind early pacesetters Hearts.Gordon insisted the Scottish champions must take confidence from their European showing when they look to reduce the gap against Kilmarnock on Sunday. “Sometimes that is the best way to win a game,” he said. “Winning 2 or 3-0, sometimes that doesn’t feel as good as that last minute goal.“It’s a good feeling, the dressing room was very happy with that and hopefully we can use that to spur us on in the next few games.”Asked if the Hoops can use that feel-good factor this weekend, he added: “Absolutely, that’s exactly what we were talking about in the dressing room.That was a great start in the group phase for us, now to take that forward into the league campaign and try and get a win at Kilmarnock.” Celtic looked fragile defensively early in the campaign but they have shored up at the back of late to put together a run of five straight clean sheets.Gordon said he’s delighted with the improvements the Hoops have made in defence to become a “very solid” unit.At the other end of the park, the goals have also somewhat dried up though and the Scotland international said the focus must now be on improving in the attacking third. He continued: “Early on we were conceding a few goals, we had to go back to the drawing board and look at a few things.“We’re starting to get that right, that is five clean sheets in a row.“Now, we have to put that in to the attacking side of things and try and score a few more goals.“We’ve looked very solid, regardless of who is playing in the centre of defence, for the last month or so.“That gives the team and myself a lot of confidence, if we do get the goal we should win games.”last_img read more

Movie draws public – and pirates

first_imgElvis (Kenneth Nkosi) and Tumi (Rapulana Seiphemo) on the road in the Eastern Cape in this still from White Wedding.(Image: White Wedding) Kenneth Nkosi, Jann Turner Rapulana Seiphemo together formed Stepping Stone Pictures to produce White Wedding. (Image: Stepping Stone Pictures)Samson MulugetaFind out more about using MediaClubSouthAfrica.com materialSouth Africa’s new comedy film White Wedding has been such an unexpected hit on local screens it has already attracted the interest of DVD pirates – but the film-makers are fighting back.Six weeks after its launch, White Wedding – best described as a road-and-buddy movie – is still on the local cinema circuit, drawing record numbers of viewers and competing strongly with Hollywood blockbusters produced with budgets hundreds of times more.That is a remarkable achievement, according to the local film industry. Normally, exhibitors are quite unsentimental in removing films that don’t perform well.“Usually, a local film lasts a week, and sometimes two,” said Jam Kaunda, a Johannesburg-based director and writer of Proof Positive, a romantic comedy.  “I’m impressed that White Wedding is still showing after more than a month.”White Wedding tells of two friends – the dependable Elvis (Kenneth Nkosi) and womanising Tumi (Rapulana Seiphemo) – as they drive through the Eastern Cape to Cape Town for Elvis’s wedding to the beautiful Ayanda. Their journey doesn’t go smoothly, as along the way they have a series of mishaps and run into a variety of characters, from a young British doctor who is fleeing her fiancé, to gun-toting white farmers.Nkosi and Seiphemo also helped finance the movie, forming production company Stepping Stone Pictures in partnership with Turner.The film hasn’t done better than the Leon Schuster franchise, a slapstick comedy model that always draws the crowds. But it’s outperformed other South African films – including the Oscar-winning Tsotsi.“In our opening weekend we were hoping to come in a comfortable third behind Tsotsi and Jerusalema, which had been the most successful non-Schusters to date,” said Jann Turner, the director of White Wedding.“By Sunday night we switched off our cell phones because they were ringing off the hook with compliments from friends and fans. Monday morning it was clear that we’d taken double Tsotsi’s opening weekend and quadrupled Jerusalema’s take. We came in at number three at the nationwide box office – behind Wolverine at one and Hannah Montana at two.”Coincidentally, Wolverine was directed by South African Gavin Hood, the director of Tsotsi.“That’s pretty amazing, that we came in so close to two movies with monster budgets and established brands,” said Turner. “We’re still in the top 10, but by our sixth weekend we were down at number seven.”Turner said that the film had done well in cinemas that draw very different demographics, from upmarket Sandton to Sterland, Cresta, Southgate, Montecasino, Maponya Mall in Soweto, and Key West in Roodepoort.“We’ve done well in all those places. So we’re pulling in an audience that varies widely across race, age, gender and class.”On the fourth weekend at Soweto’s Maponya Mall, White Wedding accounted for 50% of the total take at the box office even though the film was only one of eight movies showing in the Ster-Kinekor Theatres there, Turner said.Again with the exception of Leon Schuster films, most South African movies lose money.“We have tried to pay everyone and also to keep costs down,” Turner said. So we have spent about R6-million [US$740 000] on everything – from script development to marketing and digital prints“It looks like we are going to recoup that amount and that we’ll be able to pay our investor back.  That’s through local sales – cinema, pay TV, DVD, airline TV, regular TV. Anything we make after that we get to keep a part of – obviously our investor will take a chunk of the profit in return for his risk.“But still, it is possible that Stepping Stone Pictures will see some money from this some time down the line.  And that’s pretty amazing.”She added: “So – in retrospect – we look very clever. And people are talking about White Wedding as a model local film. In truth – at the time – we just tried very hard to keep our ownership structure simple, our costs down and to make the best possible film. “This success is despite the fact that White Wedding has drawn the attention of copyright pirates, with counterfeit DVD copies of the film being spotted in Johannesburg and Cape Town in the past few weeks.The filmmakers first learned that the film was pirated when film’s editor, Tanja Hagen, who lives in Cape Town, was told by her office cleaner how much she enjoyed White Wedding. It turned out the cleaner had not seen the movie in theatres, but watched a pirated DVD.The filmmakers reported the incident to the South African Federation Against Copyright Theft. The federation soon conducted simultaneous raids at train stations and taxi ranks in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria and confiscated thousands of pirated DVDs, known in local slang as “fong kongs.” Among the DVDs were copies of White Wedding.Actor Kenneth Nkosi was stepping into his bank in Auckland Park, Johannesburg, when he was approached by a man offering him an array of DVDs. The pirate realised too late that the man he’d approached bore a striking resemblance to the guy in one of the movies he was peddling.When Nkosi asked the hawker for a copy of White Wedding, the man shook his head and started to back away – but not before Nkosi landed a punch.According to Turner, Nkosi was furious.“Kenneth is a producer of the movie, one of its stars and also owes 25% of the R6-million we borrowed to make the movie,” she said. “He was naturally a bit upset at the idea of someone making money from his hard work. And of course Kenneth knows that we still have this huge amount to pay back to our investor.”The filmmakers scrambled to film public service announcements denouncing DVD piracy, posting them on Zoopy.com, one of South Africa’s most popular video sharing websites.In one of the announcements, actor Rapulana Seiphemo, sitting on a director’s chair at the Joubert Street taxi rank in Johannesburg, looks straight at the camera and appeals to film fans not to buy pirated copies.“If you buy pirated DVDs, not only are you denying me the opportunity to make more movies but you are also denying yourself the opportunity to be entertained by me in the future,” he says. “Please do not buy pirated DVDs. Stop it. It’s not funny.”Turner said the economics of making films is so precarious that a pirated DVD being peddled on the streets could be financially devastating.  A big part of the problem is that average people don’t understand the impact of buying illegal copies. “I think that’s a big part of the problem – people don’t think of it as stealing,” she said.“Imagine we came over to your house, took your TV, your computer, your microwave and your shoes and then set up a stall at the market near the Joubert Street taxi rank and sold your things.”It’s clearly a personal issue for Turner and the other producers, who have all risked their own money on the venture.“This is our baby we worked damn hard to make the film,” she said. “We borrowed huge amounts of money from our investor we took enormous risks and it’s nice to get a bit of glory and good reviews.“It’s really, really cool when people go see it and they pay money to do that – which allows us to pay back our investor and this shows that movies are worth investing in which allows us to raise money for our next movie.”Another part of the problem, Turner says, is the pricing of authentic DVDs.“The pirates have this big advantage – their price is very low,” she said. “I think a pirated DVD costs R30. The genuine DVD goes for around R100. So part of the problem in South Africa is that authorised DVDs cost more than most people can afford. We have to take that on board and try to come up with a strategy and solution.”In a developing country like South Africa, the film industry may have to look at ways of providing low-cost DVDs.“There is much talk in the industry of setting up a distribution network of no-frills DVDs that are good quality and authorised versions that would compete with the pirates,” said Turner.“The problem is that so far no one has put in the capital to make that happen. It’s risky because it involves competing with the vast informal sector. But it has to happen soon.“Stepping Stone would love to take part in that. So perhaps that will be one of our next ventures.”Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Mary Alexander at [email protected] articlesTop honours for SA movie African film awards honour SA Gavin Hood – from Tsotsi to X-Men Bang Bang Club lives on in film Hollywood studio for Cape Town Cape Town: Africa’s Hollywood Useful linksWhite Wedding official siteStepping Stone Pictures South African Federation Against Copyright Theft Anti-piracy videos on Zoopylast_img read more

Sanlam expands online trading facility

first_imgHe believes the JSE’s recent launch of single stock futures on foreign equities is a precursor to lifting the controls. Local financial services group Sanlam has launched iTrade, a new offering that gives South Africa’s online traders access to foreign listed instruments on 16 global stock exchanges, allowing investors to easily diversify their portfolios and giving them access to some of the most traded companies globally. Lampen says demonstration models are available free of charge on the Sanlam iTrade website. Bolus and Bolus Investments, the introducing broker to Saxo Bank, will offer clients the necessary trading help. “In view of the strong rand, it is prudent to invest between 20 and 30% of a portfolio in international markets. Investors need to hedge against those things they can’t foresee,” he said, adding that offering investors access to international companies, currencies and commodities allowed them to diversify their assets. Sanlam iTrade doesn’t charge clients for the offshore trading, although Saxo Bank does charge a fee, with costs varying depending on the trading instrument, stock exchange traded on, or live price feeds needed by the client. “Clients will be able to trade shares, currencies, commodities and exchange-traded funds, among other instruments,” he said in a statement this week. “The New York Stock Exchange, London Stock Exchange and Australian Stock Exchange are among the 16 exchanges now available to equity traders.” According to Gerhard Lampen, head of Sanlam’s online trading platform, Sanlam iTrade now offers one of the most advanced trading platforms available. “Bolus and Bolus provides assistance with opening an account, transferring funds to Saxo Bank, training on using the platform and trading the different instruments, as well as a fully staffed help desk,” he said. 30 July 2010 Lampen said that Sanlam had chosen online Danish investment bank Saxo Bank’s platform and access to global markets, because it had highly advanced trading technology and an award-winning platform. Lampen says it is the right time to launch offshore trading to investors, and believes exchange controls on individuals will be abolished in the next 12 months. ‘Right time’ for offshore investment Advanced trading technology Free demonstration models “The major aim with the new launch is to give our clients exposure to global markets – something most South African investors have not had before,” he added. In order to trade offshore, clients open a trading account with Saxo Bank through Bolus and Bolus. They then transfer money into the Saxo account – and can start trading immediately. The minimum investment is US$10 000. “Currently South Africans can invest up to R4-million offshore but there is very little stopping government from lifting these controls on individuals as very few people made use of this allocation,” he said. SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Never Missing A Beat: Philly’s Own DJ Casper

first_img Philly’s own DJ Casper has helped set the standard for DJs not only in his hometown but in hip-hop period, for quite some time. He put Philadelphia on the map as a city that’s produced some of the best turntable pros. The talented mixer got his start DJing at local Dollar parties as well as honing his skills at Dances nightclub. Since then, DJ Casper has toured and opened for some on the biggest names in music and recently made history as the first DJ to sign with the label DarkChild. Known formally as ‘The International DJ Casper’, find out what inspired this local star to get started and what project he currently has in the works. Q&A With DJ Casper Philly 360°: What musical influences did you have growing up? What made you decide to start DJing? My brothers Kelly and Johnny (RIP), were my musical influences. Kelly was the one that was a DJ, and Johnny was the rapper. But Johnny was the one that taught me how to DJ. Johnny got killed when I was a young teenager. Losing both my brother and mother became my motivation and my fire. I was intrigued by my brothers’ talents and I would always mess around with their equipment when they weren’t home. When I first put my hand on the turntables and heard the sound I could make, known as “scratching”, I was hyped up and excited by the sound and wanted to learn more about the art of DJing.
 Philly 360°: You started out DJing at local “Dollar Parties” and then at Dances Nightclub. How did this help you grow your skills? It helped me grow my skills by allowing me to continuously DJ in front of an audience. I was DJing almost every day. I would DJ Dollar parties three days a week to get my skills up. Then at Dances Nightclub, I would DJ four nights a week, and on “Super Sundays” I would DJ noon-2 p.m. for children, 2-8 p.m. for the teens, and 8 p.m – 4 a.m. for the young adults. During that time Dances was like a DJ college for me. 
 Philly 360°: How did growing up in Philadelphia, in particular, impact your craft? Philly is the home of the best DJs. And the home of the realest people. They are the most raw and uncut and will let you know if you’re talented or not. Philly people do not hold back and breed the best DJs; DJ Jazzy Jeff and DJ Cash Money being prime examples. I grew up listening to them and studying their techniques in order to perfect my own craft, so I could make a better life for myself. As a project kid growing up down 23rd and Diamond, you can get caught up in street life real quick. Seeing close friends losing their lives and getting locked up all the time will help you make your mind up quick on how you want your future to look. Already having a love for music and a talent for DJing, I saw a bright future and have been working towards my dreams ever since. Philly 360°: In 2007 you launched your own independent label – Caspaws Music Group. What has been your vision for the label and what doors has it opened? My vision for my label was to help indie artists get recognition in the Philadelphia market. By being able to produce, record, edit, arrange, mix and master, and DJ the music that I had created, I was able to be a one-stop shop and keep everything in-house; thereby enabling me to cut costs and get things done in a timely fashion. I wanted to help Indie artists reach the next level in their music careers, the same way I had help in my career. I also wanted to mentor and guide young artists who had a passion and love for music just as I was guided at a young age myself. That’s the vision I had for Caspaws Music Group. It opened up the doors for me to be recognized as a producer and not just a DJ. 
 Philly 360°: You recently became the first DJ ever to sign with DarkChild. How did that come about? I am really good friends with Terry “Buzz” Brown, Rodney Jerkins’ cousin, best friend, and the A&R of DarkChild. Rodney was looking for a DJ to sign to DarkChild and to manage because he feels that the DJ is going to be the next form of artistry on the rise. Rodney asked Buzz to find some DJs for him. Out of the twenty-four DJs he listened to, I was the one that was picked. He wanted to meet with me so I went to New York, met with him, and the rest is history.
 Philly 360°: You’ve toured with and opened up for artists such as Gerald Levert, Akon, Young Jeezy, Omarion, Busta Rhymes, P. Diddy—among others. What has been the highlight of your career thus far? Going on several national and international tours and having the chance to meet such dope artists from all walks of life were all great experiences but the highlight of my career thus far has been being recognized by an icon such as Rodney Jerkins. That’s the moment I truly felt all my hard work, sacrifices and God-given talent had finally paid off.   Philly 360°: What is a typical day like for DJ Casper? A typical day [for me] is getting up making my fresh fruit smoothie and doing my workout, hopping onto my email accounts then going into the studio to DJ for my mix shows, producing tracks, and mixing down records. At night, I DJ at a variety of venues in and out of town, and normally when I get back home, I am back in the studio or tweeting my fans and supporters. 
 Philly 360°: Among your many accomplishments, you’re also the official DJ for 104.7 FM (KDUK) now. Do you have any other projects you’re working on? What’s next for DJ Casper? As of 2013, I signed a deal to be one of the official DJs for Music Choice Television Network. You can tune in weekly to see and hear me on the Rap Channel. I’m extremely excited and honored to be a part of Music Choice. I’m now working on my personal project titled “First the DJ” and also my First the DJ clothing line. I’m also working on projects with my jeweler “SK”, owner of Empire Jewelers, as well as gearing up for my International Tour overseas. I have other deals in the works so to keep up with what’s next visit djcas.com, twitter.com/DJCasperDJC, instagram.com/DJCasperDJC, and facebook.com/DJCasperDJC #WatchMyWork #FirstTheDJ. DJ Casper(Ben Henry)last_img read more

Samsung Galaxy S6 might come with 4GB RAM

first_imgReports in Korean media have indicated that the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S6 will come with 4GB RAM. These reports have been based on statements from analysts working in the financial sector of Korea. Till now, it had been speculated that the devices would come with 3GB of RAM. Also, almost confirmed is an Edge variation of the handset which will probably sport curved displays on both sides of the phone. The next flagship from the stable of Samsung is being anticipated for a launch during the MWC, Barcelona event.  Some other rumored specifications of the Samsung Galaxy S6 smartphone are as follows-1. Snapdragon 810 Exynos 7420 chipset2. 5.5 inch QHD 1440 x 2560 pixels display3. 20 MP main camera, 5MP front cameralast_img