Paul Simon Doc Wins SXSW's Audience Award
Joe Berlinger's documentary on Paul Simon's return to South Africa 25 years after the recording of "Graceland" won the SXSW Audience Award in the 24 Beats per Second Category. "Under African Skies" is the only music film to win an Audience Award.
Next up for the film is a stop at the Dallas Film Festival, which runs April 12-22, and then the London Sundance Festival April 26-29.
Simon will return to London July 15 to perform with Ladysmith Black Mambazo and other musicians from the "Graceland" sessions as part of the Hard Rock Calling festival, the Guardian reported this weekend. Jimmy Cliff, whose "Vietnam" Simon covered on his tour last year, will also perform with Simon.
"Under African Skies" chronicles Simon's return to South Africa two and a half decades after visiting the country to work with local musicians. At the time, a cultural boycott was in place, which stirred up resentment among forces opposed to the Apartheid regime. Simon visited in 1985 and released "Graceland' in 1986. A year later, Simon was being praised far and wide for bringing South African musicians into the public eye.
The final SXSW award, in the Headliners category, will be handed out Monday. Among the music films in the category are "Marley" and "Big Easy Express."