That Day - A Short Film

That Day - A Short Film

From Phumi Morare

We're raising funds for our short film based on my mother's experience saving her brother under apartheid in South Africa. This is the story of how she finds her voice to save her brother.

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Johannesburg, 1984. LERATO (22) is a quiet and repressed young woman living in apartheid South Africa. She takes care of her younger brother, ANELE (17), and sister, KHANYI (8). Lerato and Anele have a tense relationship - Lerato is concerned that Anele’s activism against the apartheid regime is putting his life in danger, whilst Anele believes Lerato to be too passive by not fighting. When Lerato is at work as a nurse at a hospital, she begins to suspect that something is wrong after Anele doesn’t arrive after school, as expected. Her suspicions are confirmed when Anele’s fellow youth activist friend, THABO (17), arrives at the hospital wounded. Thabo dies from his wounds, as Lerato and the nurses try to save him. Heartbroken and afraid, Lerato searches for Anele, desperate to find him alive. When Lerato finds him in a situation where his life is in danger, she has to muster up her voice from deep within to fight back and bring him home alive with both their lives at stake.


THAT DAY is an important story to tell because not only does it shed a personal perspective on historic events, it is also a story about triumph in the midst of oppression. It is about the political awakening of a young woman, who, by circumstance, has to find the courage to fight to protect her family. 

Personally, the film is also an homage to my mother, and the many black South African mothers who fought against impossible odds to help us to thrive. It is a tribute to how they contributed to society by resisting in their own, subtle, sometimes unnoticed ways.

I hope this film inspires other women to reclaim and use their voice. By writing about Lerato’s journey, I have personally been inspired by her to find my own voice and use it. It has caused my own political awakening. Through THAT DAY, I hope that the audience will be able to step into the world of the everyday person in apartheid South Africa and have empathy for what my people went through.

- Phumi Morare, writer/director of THAT DAY


Phumi Morare, Writer/Director

Phumi is a South African writer/director with a background in investment banking at Goldman Sachs in London and management consulting at McKinsey & Company in Johannesburg. She worked as a junior producer at a boutique film production company in South Africa where she created, developed and pitched TV projects, one of which was commissioned by SABC, the national broadcaster. Phumi is currently pursuing her MFA in Film Directing at Dodge College at Chapman University.

Christine Cho, Producer

Christine received her Bachelor of Arts in English writing from Kalamazoo College. During her last year, she worked as a production assistant on a documentary film. She is currently working towards receiving her Master of Fine Arts in Film and Television Producing at Chapman University, during which she worked as an intern at Quinn Media Management and Whitaker Entertainment. During her first year at Chapman University, she has produced three short films.

Arri Caviness, Production Designer

Arri Caviness is a Production Design graduate student at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. She previously attended the University of Texas at Austin and graduated with a degree in Radio-Television-Film. While in Austin she worked as a scenic shop assistant for Texas Performing Arts, and designed for various film and music video productions around the area, including the PBS travel series, The Daytripper. Since 2018, she has been an art director at the Sundance Directors Lab.

Sherry Qian, Cinematographer

Sherry Qian is a MFA in Film Production candidate with emphasis in cinematography at Chapman University. She previously acquired a B.S. in Commerce at University of Virginia. Coming from the business world, she pivoted her career into filmmaking by working as an assistant director on over half a dozen commercial productions in Beijing. After attending Chapman University, she has worked on many short films, commercials and music videos as the cinematographer, AC or gaffer.

Mojtaba Mirshekari, Editor

Mojtaba Mirshekari is a Los Angeles based Iranian Filmmaker with experience in directing/editing short films and documentaries. Being fluent in English and Persian, he has contributed to many film projects as Director, Editor, Assistant Editor, DIT and Sound Designer. Mojtaba started his journey in filmmaking by getting his MA degree in cinema studies in Iran and he is currently a MFA student in film production major with emphasis on editing at Chapman University.

Andree Lin, Sound Designer

Andree Lin dedicates her life to the appreciation of cinema from working in film festivals to mixing sound in mix rooms. After years of working in Women Make Waves Film Festival in Taiwan, which aims to promote gender equality and LGBTQ rights, she came to Chapman University to pursue an MFA degree in Sound Design. She is interested in telling the stories of the underrepresented.


Sharing Lerato's story through THAT DAY can only happen with your help! Please donate and share this page with your network and help spread the word.

These stories are important to tell. We cannot thank you enough for your contribution in making THAT DAY possible!





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