The short story goes… When their shantytowns are threatened with mass eviction, three ‘young lions’ of South Africa’s new generation rise from the shacks and take their government to the highest court in the land, putting the promises of democracy to the test.

Dear Mandela follows their journey from their shacks to the highest court as they invoke Nelson Mandela's example and become leaders in a growing social movement.

By turns inspiring, devastating and funny, the film offers a new perspective on the role that young people can play in political change and is a fascinating portrait of South Africa coming of age.

Co-directed by award-winning South African filmmaker and editor Dara Kell, and Christopher Nizza, an Emmy Award-winning NYC filmmaker and editor, this is the pair's feature-length documentary debut.

It won Best South African Documentary at the Durban International Film Festival, the Movies That Matter Golden Butterfly award and most recently won the Grand Chameleon award at the Brooklyn Film Festival. It's also an African Academy Award nominee for Best Documentary.

It played in a very limited theatrical run last fall, so I pretty sure the majority of you have yet to see it.

But now more of you will, as the acclaimed film will have its national USA broadcast TV premiere, as part of the fifth season of AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange, an innovative documentary series highlighting contemporary life, art and pop culture in the African Diaspora, produced by Black Public Media, and distributed by WORLD Channel and American Public Television.

And as announced last month, Gabourey Sidibe will host season five of AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchangewhich premiered nationally on PBS' WORLD Channel on January 22, and is to run weekly, through February 5.

Focusing on human and women's rights struggles this upcoming new season, Eliaichi Kimaro's A Lot Like You (a film covered here on S&A) opened season 5 of the series on January 22.

And a week later, Dear Mandela will air TONIGHT, Tuesday, January 29, 2013 at 7pm ET, 9pm PT.

Watch its trailer below: