3-Minute Interview: Sanelle Sibanda

If a filmmaker’s point of view is informed by experience, Sibanda has plenty to draw upon. He grew up in war-torn Zimbabwe, studied in Texas and London and finally landed in San Francisco. His first feature film, “Generation Now,” is playing through Thursday at the 4 Star Theater in San Francisco.

You say you get your inspiration from everyday life. What inspired “Generation Now?” I was walking on 48th Avenue in San Francisco in the Sunset district and I came across a group of young people who seemed to be wandering aimlessly, throwing bottles and vandalizing the neighborhood. I wondered what could be causing them to act like this, and I started to explore the concept that maybe they didn’t think they were loved or didn’t get the proper attention or guidance at home.

What was your budget like for the film? It was shot with local talent on a shoestring budget, probably around $25,000. We found some of the actors on Craigslist.

Tell me about your memories growing up amid a civil war in Zimbabwe. I was living with my grandmother part of the time in the countryside. The freedom fighters would come during the night and they would take young people as their slaves to some degree, to carry guns and bullets. They were abused in many ways.

You’re dealing with a family crisis at the moment. Why did you decide to go ahead with the film’s opening? Yes, my 8-month-old son was diagnosed with leukemia in mid-January, so I’ve been spending a lot of time at the hospital. But I felt the need to express my gratitude to the cast and crew, and I didn’t want them to think I didn’t appreciate their hard work.

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Although The City has been shut down and largely empty, people have enjoyed gathering in places such as Dolores Park. <ins>(Al Saracevic/The Examiner)</ins>
Come back to San Francisco: The City needs you now

Time to get out of the house, people. The City’s been lonely… Continue reading

A surveillance camera outside Macy’s at Union Square on Tuesday, July 28, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Is the tide turning against surveillance cameras in SF?

Crime-fighting camera networks are springing up in commercial areas all around San… Continue reading

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott speaks alongside Mayor London Breed at a news conference about 2019 crime statistics at SFPD headquarters on Jan. 21, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
What the media gets wrong about crime in San Francisco

By Lincoln Mitchell Special to The Examiner Seemingly every day now, you… Continue reading

Vice President Kamala Harris is under fire for her comments in Guatemala earlier this week. (Examiner file photo.)
SF immigration advocates slam Kamala Harris’ ‘betrayal’ to her past

Kamala Harris’ comments earlier this week discouraging Central Americans from traveling to… Continue reading

Youth activists with the Sunrise Movement march along a rural road during their two-week trek from Paradise to San Francisco to call attention to an increase in deadly wildfires as a result of climate change on June 2, 2021. (Photo by Brooke Anderson)
Weeks-long climate march culminates on the Golden Gate Bridge

Lola’s alarm goes off most mornings before dawn. The 17-year-old high school… Continue reading

Most Read