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FROM THIS EPISODE

Today on Press Play, African leaders are meeting with President Obama this week in Washington to talk about economic development and business opportunities. But most  Americans still view the continent as a place to be saved, not invested in. And what does it mean to actually do business in Africa? Then, a group of high-profile filmmakers are banding together to help save Kodak’s motion picture film business. Next, a look at how the drought has affected the wine industry in California. And a new book details a caper in which one of the most sought-after wines in the world is taken hostage. Finally, we take a peek inside the character-driven world of independent science fiction films.

Banner Image: President Obama and four presidents from Africa, public domain, U.S. Government.

Producers:
Andrew Walsh
Christian Bordal
Matt Holzman
Jolie Myers
Anna Scott

Africa Reality Check 7 MIN, 58 SEC

News of the ebola outbreak in Western Africa has cast a shadow over the summit of African heads of state and business leaders in Washington this week. But African leaders are trying to change the narrative coming out of this meeting. Our collective American view of Africa is often one of disfunction, disease, war, ethnic tensions. And that attitude may mean that we miss out on an explosion of economic opportunity in the region.

Guests:
Dayo Olopade, journalist and author (@madayo)

More:
The Bright Continent: Breaking Rules and Making Change in Modern Africa

Doing Business in Africa 7 MIN, 35 SEC

What does it mean to actually do business in Africa? Stephen Katsaros is the founder of a company called Nokero, as in “No Kerosene”. Kerosene is a widely used fuel in Africa, but Katsaros is pushing a transition to solar, portable light bulbs in places like Kenya and Uganda.

Guests:
Stephen Katsaros, CEO and Founder of Nokero, a firm that sells solar light bulbs in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania among other African countries

Saving Kodak 8 MIN, 54 SEC

A group of high-profile filmmakers and cinematographers are banding together to keep Kodak’s motion picture film division afloat. Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, JJ Abrams and some other big Hollywood directors are asking film studios to guarantee that they will buy a minimum amount of Kodak film in order to keep the plant that manufactures the film open.

Guests:
Robert Richardson, Cinematographer who has worked with Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese and Oliver Stone.

Wine and the Drought 5 MIN, 6 SEC

California’s epic drought is bringing new meaning to the term “dry wine.” We produce about 90 percent of U.S. wine, but record-low rainfall is starting to take a toll on our vineyards. With no relief in sight, the situation could threaten one of the state’s signature industries.

Guests:
Jason Haas, Managing partner of the family-owned Tablas Creek Vineyard near Paso Robles (@jasonchaas)

Shadows in the Vineyard 8 MIN, 6 SEC

Poison, intrigue… and booze: all key components of an unusual crime that played out a few years ago in the French countryside. A world-renowned vineyard was threatened with poisoning if the owners didn’t pay up. The caper that unfolded shines a light on the rarefied world of fine wines and the colorful characters that inhabit it.

Guests:
Maximillian Potter, Journalist and author of “Shadows in the Vineyard: The True Story of the Plot to Poison the World’s Greatest Wine.” (@maxapotter)

More:
Shadows in the Vineyard: The True Story of the Plot to Poison the World's Greatest Wine

Indie Sci-fi 8 MIN, 42 SEC

Giant studio sci-fi films are pretty much a sure thing when it comes to box office money. But there’s a rich world of independent science fiction films as well. And these films are asking big questions - even if they’re not making big bucks.

Guests:
Matt Holzman, Producer, 'Press Play' and 'First Take' (@KCRW_Matt)

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