Why 'Zulu' did wonders for my tribe

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tags: film, Zulu, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi



It is a film that tells how an outnumbered band of British soldiers held off thousands of African warriors at Rorke’s Drift in 1879.

Littered with references to marauding “fuzzies”, Zulu might seem an odd choice to be digitally remastered and premiered at the Odeon Leicester Square next month to raise money for Prince Harry’s African charities.

Yet despite being produced long before the era of political correctness, the film, which made a star of Michael Caine and celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, still has many fans in unlikely places.

None more so, it seems, than Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who played his great grandfather, the Zulu King Cetshwayo, in the film.

In an interview given to coincide with the film’s re-release, he described it as a notable piece of PR for South Africa’s largest ethnic group.

“The aim of the film was to show bravery on both sides,” he told The Sunday Telegraph. “Rorke’s Drift is part of our history. I don’t think one should try to wipe off history, no matter how unpleasant it may be.”




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