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Winnie distances herself from biopic

Madikizela-Mandela says the film is based on an unauthorised biography.

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Winnie Madikizela-Mandela has distanced herself from Darrell Roodt's movie Winnie Mandela, saying the film is based on an unauthorised biography.

In a statement released on her website, Madikizela-Mandela says, "unlike Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, this film is based on an unauthorised biography whose producers did not deem it fit to consult me or my family. My family and I are therefore not associated with this production".

"In my life's struggle I have seen and heard many things said about me. I understand that my story, alongside that of my people is one that will continue to be told for many generations.

"In an attempt to ensure that my truth was reflected, I reached out to the filmmakers, but my advances were rejected. I imagine the basis was to allow the creative process to occur organically; a concept I try to understand. I respect all creative efforts to make this story one that would appeal to a global audience as well as yield commercial gains for all those who invested in it."

In the statement, she went to say, "In principle, I have no 'problem' with the Winnie Mandela film while it remains important to me that my life story be portrayed accurately. I appreciate that this would require the utmost integrity of the storytellers but, my story is mine and no one knows it better."

Madikizela-Mandela also rejected media reports which suggests she has a problem with the international actors in the film.

The film, which stars Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard, is a film adaptation of Anne Marie du Preez Bezrob's biography_ Winnie Mandela: A Life_.

The movie is scheduled for release in South African cinemas on 7 March.