Experiencing Interruptions?

Love In Hard Times

The story involves a family man, having an affair with his employee, who seeks a divorce from his wife.

She reluctantly agrees - under specific terms and conditions to which he consents - thinking it’s a `Done Deal’.

She requires him to perform certain actions over a four week period - in the form of tasks generally expected of a husband and father - in a loving family environment.

As the weeks unfold and the family grows closer, does she have a hidden motive to reignite the dying flame and ensure their son has a father on whom he can rely and trust forever?

  • Tebogo Mkhabela
  • Tebogo Mkhabela & Doug van der Walt
  • Seton Bailey
  • Matthew Gray
  • Paul Du Toit (Jon)
    Key Cast
  • Dorette Potgieter (Lisa)
    Key Cast
  • Precious Makgaletsa (Sarah)
    Key Cast
  • Gabriella Peter (Tina)
    Additional Cast
  • Jed Wijnberg (Peter)
    Additional Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    26 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    October 3, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    62,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    South Africa
  • Country of Filming:
    South Africa
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Alexa Mini Camera kit
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Tebogo Mkhabela

Tebogo Mkhabela is a South African born filmmaker/ Director his career started in 2008 where he wrote and directed Hopeless (short film). After graduation he then moved to Cape Town where he joined the F.I.L.M programme (an accredited Film & Electronic Media skills development facilitator & training provider, assisting in the growth and development of a diverse, sustainable, internationally competitive South African film, electronic & digital media industry.). Since then he worked his way up from being a set P.A in feature films and worked his way up to 1st A.D before he got an opportunity to direct his first professional short film (Love In Hard Times) and then went on to work on High Rollers a SABC produced drama series, where he directed a number of episodes.

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Director Statement

After I graduated, I became an intern and trainee on the F.I.L.M. program. Over 6 years I have painstakingly worked my way step-by-step, up the line function in the film production hierarchy in South Africa, the hard way - from Production Assistant to 3rd AD to 2nd 2nd AD to 1st AD in action movies, comedies, biopics, dystopian futuristic sagas, commercials and series from Homeland 4 to Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom to Resident Evil. In the process I have had the privilege of quietly working alongside and learning the art and craft of directing by observing the interaction between some of the truly great actors and directors of contemporary international feature film production.

And now with my short film Love in Hard Times, I have graduated to the position of first-time Director.

The first question people ask is: “Why this this middle class, inter-personal, family psycho-drama? Surely there are more interesting, dynamic and exciting subjects to make movies about?”

My reply is that having lost someone very close to me to cancer, I wrote LOVE IN HARD TIMES – together with screenwriter Doug van der Walt - based on a popular, urban legend. The original author is unknown and variations on the theme have been posted online as common property and part of the public domain.

It’s a domestic, family drama, fraught with searing inter-personal psychodynamics - begging fundamental, deeply personal questions about the choices we make in life – and their inevitable consequences.
LOVE IN HARD TIMES is a unique, original interpretation of this urban legend, with a distinctly South African flavour.
I see the F.I.L.M. program which provided me with this incredible opportunity to direct my own short film, as a huge opportunity for me – and now trainees and interns who are where I was 6 years ago; they look at me and say: “This guy was once a trainee and now he is directing, and this is exciting and this is possible – I can do it!!!