Mandela daughters ask that film's premiere go on

Mandela daughters ask that film's premiere go on

Credit: AFP/Getty Images

Daughter of South African leader Nelson Mandela, Zindzi, poses on the red carpet upon arrival to attend the royal film premier of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" in central London on December 5, 2013. The film is adapted from former South African President Nelson Mandela's auto-biography and chronicles the life journey from his childhood in a rural village through his struggle for rights during the apartheid era and his inauguration as the first democratically elected president of South Africa. AFP PHOTO/BEN STANSALL (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)

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by Associated Press

khou.com

Posted on December 5, 2013 at 10:52 PM

LONDON -- Prince William and others attending the London premiere of a new film about Nelson Mandela were told of his death Thursday night as the closing credits rolled.

The news broke during the premiere. Stopping the screening of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" was discussed, but Mandela's daughters asked that the film continue, a spokesman with the production said Thursday night.

His two youngest daughters, who were at the premiere, were told of their father's death during the screening "and immediately left the cinema," a statement from the Nelson Mandela Foundation said.

The film's producer, Anant Singh, announced Mandela's death once the film was over, and he called for a moment of silence.

The audience included the film's stars and William and his wife, Kate.

"It was extremely sad and tragic news," William said upon leaving.

When asked on the red carpet on her way into the premiere about her father, Zindzi Mandela had said, "My father is fine. ... He's just a typical 95-year-old who is frail."

Actor Idris Elba, who plays Mandela in the film, later said in a statement: "I am stunned at this very moment, in mourning with the rest of the world and Madiba's family. We have lost one of the greatest human beings to have walked this earth; I only feel honored to be associated with him."

Many South Africans called Mandela by his clan name, Madiba, which means "reconciler," as a token of affection and respect.

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