By Trust Rukwava

IT takes much longer for one to make a name for himself in the ever-evolving film industry and such is the case for Stanford Joni, a talented editor, producer and filmmaker who runs Sky Rocket films.

Stanford Joni or simply Stan, a man who many may have forgotten is one of the few filmmakers who have stood the test of time and shown versatility.

As Zimdancehall chanter ‘Blot’ belted out in one of his hits ” _Hoyi hoyi hoyirere…ndoripinda riddim handingasarire…Stan tora video kumberi tibudire_ ” perhaps one would want to know who Stan really is!

The Harare based filmmaker, Joni might be known by a few who have a passion for visuals but he had a meteoric rise which is etched in the memories of many through his Musarova Bigman production for Wallace Chirumiko aka Winky D.

In his nascent stages, Joni grew up mostly between Harare, Gweru, Mazowe and Bindura as his father would get transfered at work.

Joni began his career at an early age drawing inspiration from his father who is a professional television and stage actor.

He claims his father would take him and his brother to his shows and shoots and that experience made it possible for him to fall in love with his fathers trade.

“I wanted to do it differently and when I got the chance to film Baba Musarova Bigman, I think that’s when things switched up on me and I realized that I could actually do the film thing professionally” said Joni.

Stan was also inspired by Todd Philips a multi-award winning American filmmaker and director.In his illustrious journey, he has worked with various producers including; Chillspot Records, Iton music,PTK, Cashlibs, Cymplex Music, Samcris and Sludem.

He has also done video productions for; Seh Calaz, Quonfused, Mostaff and other upcoming Zimdancehall artists who make up the long list of his production.

“It’s like I have worked with everyone involved in Zimdancehall from the producers to the artists” added Joni.

Joni said he is motivated by growth, everyday he learns a new thing be it a new edit or film technique.

Asked about his future, Stan said the future has endless possibilities that can be positive.

“The future is very promising in terms of film and television projects.I have several television projects in development and some are ready for production finalizing their takeoff. There are also a few short and feature films in the works, I’m excited about what the future holds,” said Joni.

He also added that: “Money is always a draw back in the system good productions require money to come out as pre planned and equipment is a hustle when you start up without any financial backing, equipment is huge draw back.”

Stan’s story although not widely told and his career which is scaling to dizzy heights,, he will surely serve as an inspiration to many aspiring filmmakers in Zimbabwe.

Stanford Joni (left) and Seh Calaz