The TEAM Côte d’Ivoire Season 1 has been pre-selected at the 10th Festival du Cinéma Image et Vie (10thCinema Festival, Images and Life) that will be happening in Dakar, Senegal between 15-19 June. French speakers can visit the website to find out more.
Of the countries that the TEAM currently airs in, Cote d’Ivoire is the only one with a team qualifying for the World Cup. Fans of Les Éléphants, as they are affectionately called, must be happy that Didier Drogba, the captain and star looks like he will play on the world stage after all!
The DRC has one of the most pluralistic media environments in the world, with more than 450 radio stations and more than 100 television stations. In the capital—Kinshasa—alone, there are 51 Congolese television stations, and surveys show that television is the preferred source of information for Kinshasa’s 10 million residents. With this enormous potential for TV to bring about social change, Search for Common Ground has begun television production and training, using different formats and innovative production-based training approaches. One of these productions is the DRC installment of The TEAM.
The Congolese version of The Team, L’Equipe, focuses on an all- female football team, ironically named ‘The Mosquitoes’ whose two main characters struggle with issues of sexual violence, corruption, tribalism, impunity and reconciliation, as they try to lead the Mosquitoes team to victory. The series handles issues of conflict and good governance, resonating with the metaphor: “If we don’t collaborate, we won’t score goals.” The series finished its 45 day shoot in late January, and is expected to be on air by July 2010. Watch your screens!
You won’t be able to see DRC’s “Leopards” this world cup but as Zaire they were the first Black African team to participate in a FIFA World Cup and they won the 2009 African Championship of Nations.
Filming L'Equipe in the DRC
The Team is now making its debut in Palestine, where it will be broadcast in West Bank cities as the lead-in show immediately before the nighttime World Cup matches. The series has an all-Palestinian cast and crew and has become Palestine’s largest TV production ever!
Although Palestine hasn’t qualified for this year’s World Cup, the sport continues to be a symbol of unity. 2008 marked the team’s first home match on Palestinian soil, which showed how much of a unifying force football can be!
Source: The Common Ground Blog, http://sfcg.wordpress.com/.
What did you think of this review?
“The work that Search for Common Ground is doing with the groundbreaking television project, The Team, matches our aims. Football (soccer) is a remarkable tool which can break down barriers, foster understanding, and teach people valuable lessons on a wide range of social issues.”
--Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the Premier League
In its multi-nation, episodic drama The Team, Search for Common Ground has merged the global appeal of soccer/football* with soap opera to help transform social attitudes and diminish violent behavior in countries grappling with deeply rooted conflict. The television series addresses the very real divisive issues facing societies in a dozen African, Asian and Middle Eastern countries, using sport as a unifier to surmount barriers. Each production of The Team follows the characters on a football team who must overcome their differences – be they cultural, ethnic, religious, tribal, racial or socio-economic – in order to work together to win the game.
The Team rings true for viewers, given that all of the series are created and produced locally. Actors and scriptwriters, who have experienced violent conflict and divisions firsthand, are drawn from local populations in countries like Kenya, Morocco and Cote d’Ivoire. Local production companies and technicians take the lead, with additional technical assistance and support from Common Ground Productions.