The delightful and much-loved children’s TV series, Maya the Bee, has been made into a feature film for the big screen. In a South African first, the film – distributed by Black Sheep Films – will be released locally in three of the country’s official languages – in English as Maya the Bee Movie (also in 3D), in Afrikaans as Maya die By Movie and, in isiZulu as uMaya Inyosi iMovie. This 3D computer-animated comedy adventure releases in the three languages at select Ster-Kinekor cinemas countrywide on Friday, September 18.
It is a significant step in that, for the first time, the same film will be released with three different language soundtracks, as opposed to the more common sub-titles. Significantly, the film releases just before South Africans celebrate their diverse cultures on Heritage Day (September 24), making the movie accessible to a wider, multi-lingual audience.
Children are encouraged to see the movie in their home language first and then a second time in one of the other languages, as a way to enhance their second language skills.
But, for those who can’t wait for the adventures of Maya, Ster-Kinekor is hosting special pre-screenings of the film (in all three languages). The pre-screenings take place at all its sites nationally on Saturday, September 12, for the first four show times of the day – 9 am, 12 noon, 2 pm and 5 pm.
There will also be exciting activities for the kids to participate in, at select Ster-Kinekor sites on the opening weekend of the film (September 19 and 20 ), and on Heritage Day (September 24). These include various arts and crafts, colouring-in sheets, balloons and some Maya the Bee hampers up for grabs for some lucky prize winners.
The participating cinemas are: Cedar Square, Cradlestone Mall, Greenstone Mall and Carnival City in and around Johannesburg; The Grove Mall in Pretoria; Watercrest Mall and Musgrave in Durban; and N1 City, Promenade and Blue Route in Cape Town. The activity tables will be abuzz from 10.30 am to 3 pm on each of the three days.
Maya the Bee Movie is based on the German children’s book of the same name by Waldemar Bonsels, written over a century ago in 1912. It is directed by Alexs Stadermann, and features the voices of Coco Jack Gillies (as Maya), Kodi Smit-McPhee, Noah Taylor, Richard Roxburgh, Jacki Weaver and Miriam Margolyes.
The film is the big-screen adventure that follows Maya, a young bee who leaves the hive and embarks on a new adventure to discover the beauty and mysteries of nature.
Freshly-hatched Maya is a little whirlwind of a bee who won’t follow the rules of the hive. One of these rules is not to trust the hornets that live beyond the meadow. When the Royal Jelly is stolen, the hornets are suspected and Maya is thought to be their accomplice. No one believes that she is the innocent victim and no one will stand by her, except for her good-natured best friend, Willy.
After a long and eventful journey to the hornets’ hive, Maya and Willy soon discover the true culprit and set about bringing him to book.
Watch the trailer for Maya the Bee Movie at http://www.sterkinekor.com/?cinemaID=11#/trailer/7512/3D%20-%20Maya%20the%20Bee/ (English)