Both Worlds ­ the makers of ZANEWS ­ scoops up a host of major Industry Awards

On Wednesday, November 24th, in Braamfontein’s Alexander Theatre, ZANEWS received one of 11 highly prestigious honors at the Financial Mail’s annual AdFocus Awards. ZANEWS was chosen by a judging panel of South Africa’s marketing and advertising leaders to receive the “Newsmaker of the Year ” award.

There was a standing ovation as the coveted trophy was handed to ZANEWS co­creator and Executive Producer Thierry Cassuto by Financial Mail editor Barney Mthombothi and AdFocus jury chairman Neil van der Weele. Each year, the Financial Mail publishes its annual review of notable award winners among contenders in this “highly competitive industry” in a special edition magazine. A profile of ZANEWS and its production company BOTH WORLDS features in the AdFocus annual, which is available to FM subscribers and through retail outlets this week.

But there were more awards! On November 18th in Cape Town, Both Worlds had already been honored twice at the Digital Media and Marketing Association’s 2010 Bookmark Awards annual festival. Both Worlds received two highly coveted (and heavy) Bookmark Award trophies: one Gold Pixel for Best Video Programming among South Africa’s publishers and one Bronze Pixel for Best Online Video among agencies for the “Chicken to Change” music video produced in collaboration with Freshlyground. This year’s Bookmark Awards festival honored the best of over 400 entries from 42 agencies and 32 publishers in 43 award categories. Both Worlds was one of the top contenders at this year’s Bookmarks as a finalist in five categories: best online video, best specialist digital publisher, best mixed­media project, best use of video/audio, and best blog.

Thierry Cassuto, MD of Both Worlds and Executive Producer of ZANEWS, said “We are extremely proud of our team’s work, which stands out among the best in South Africa. Our pioneering work in the digital space was honored and deemed ‘world class’ by two international panels of judges in publisher and agency categories.” In 2009, when the pilot program for ZANEWS was lost in the SABC bureaucracy, Both Worlds began to pursue all possible ways to bring its fresh, provocative, satirical comedy to SA audiences via new media. Why? Because Thierry Cassuto and co­creator Zapiro believe “South Africa is ready for this” and that “here (in the emerging digital universe) we can.”

Both Worlds has been producing satirically creative content ­­ ZANEWS ­­ for digital and social entertainment online and mobile, for just over one year now, thanks to the brave and steadfast support of airline kulula.com and others who have helped, including M&G online, WebAfrica, Apple (Project 3 & Digicape).

ZANEWS is enjoyed by tens of thousands of fans daily on zanews.co.za, YouTube (now as South Africa’s #1 channel), and is also distributed and shared on Facebook, Twitter, TimesLive, M&G online, SowetanLive, Cape Town TV, Summit TV, as well as on two special edition volumes released on DVDs nationwide. ZANEWS has received numerous awards including a 2009 Prism for Best Sponsorship Program, the 2010 Handspring Award for Puppetry, the 2010 SABLOGAWARD for best video blog, and now two Pixels at the 2010 Bookmark Awards and Financial Mail’s AdFocus Award as “Newsmaker of the Year.” Both Worlds, based in Cape Town, invests in film, tv, and digital projects, hiring, training, and developing the diverse talents and creativity of South Africans.

For more information contact: info@both­worlds.com