Bollywood Actor to play Papwa in local feature film

Former NASA Engineer to lead Visual Effects Programme at Durban FilmMart 2012
Award-winning filmmakers return to Durban FilmMart 2012

Bollywood Actor to play Papwa in local feature film

16 July 2012 –

Local golfing legend to be honoured on Big Screen

The producer of a feature film set to portray the life account of Durban golfing legend Papwa Sewgolum is confident of the film’s wide-reaching impact. Gauteng-based producer David Selvan is also setting his sights on an international release to the much anticipated film Papwa.

“The story is based on the human message, that a person with talent and fortitude can make it against all odds. I believe people who watch it will be moved to tears, and uplifted,” said Selvan who has worked extensively in Los Angeles and London.

Papwa is based in the real life story of Papwa Sewgolum, a Durban man of Indian descent who defied the odds and the discriminatory sports codes of apartheid to play golf. Papwa’s prowess in the game won him acclaim worldwide and rubbished the rationality of apartheid segregation laws.

The film is just one of the many film projects selected to appear at the Durban FilmMart next week (20-23 July 2012). Selvan will use the unique opportunity to pitch the film to international financiers, broadcasters and coproducers as well as receive insight and advice from key experts who will assist in positioning the film to an international market.

Selvan emphasises that the film steers clear of any ‘big political message’. “Papwa could have been a world famous golfer but for Apartheid- he beat Gary Player who was the known to be the best golfer in the world. He had an extraordinary talent and was also an inspirational figure; a person who succeeded despite his very humble background. This is therefore both a personal and a historically significant story.”

The lead role of Papwa will be played a Bollywood A-lister, accompanied by an established international actor who is set to play Graham Wulff, the chemist and inventor who befriended the golfer.

Although Papwa is still early in its early developmental stages of pre-production with a formulation of a script, Selvan and the films writer and director Catherine Stewart as well as executive producer Georgina Hamilton are making a urgent appeal to the public; “Since all great films rely first and foremost on the script we have to get this right before we can go into the next stage. We would particularly welcome any information from individuals who knew Papwa personally because we would very much like to know as much as possible about Papwa the person,” said Selvan.

The team have sourced much material from High-Court judge Christopher Nicholson’s acclaimed biography Papwa Sewgolum: From Pariah to Legend. They have also received support and contributions from Papwa’s son, Rajen Sewgolum, also a seasoned golfer.

Although there is still much to be done, Selvan anticipates the film will conclude production next year. “Ideally we would like to open the film in Durban and Los Angeles. Durban is the heart of where this story begins and ends and it would be wonderful to have a premier in Papwa’s home city.”

David Selvan can be contacted via email at

Megan van den Heever, FBI Communications
+2731 208 5525/ +2784 282 7674. E-mail: /


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.