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ENIFF and KILAFends today in Enugu and Kano
Curtain will draw today on the Eastern Nigeria International Film Festival (ENIFF) and the Kano International Indigenous Language Film Festival (KILAF). The ENIFF and KILAF opened on November 21. While the ENIFF held in Enugu, South East, Nigeria, filmmakers and film enthusiast converged on Kano for the fifth edition of KILAF. Founded by the dynamic duo of Ujuaku Akukwe and Chris Odili, the ENIFF celebrates the vibrant world of cinema while honouring the remarkable contributions of the Southeast region of Nigeria to the history of filmmaking on the African continent and beyond. This year’s line up at ENIFF featured 36 outstanding films from around the world including the award-winning film by C.J Obasi, titled, Mami Wata. In addition to the impressive film lineup, there we were tailor-made master classes and workshops designed to enhance the skills and knowledge of filmmakers. The sessions were led by senior industry executives, including Femi Odugbemi, Ego Boyo, Emeka Mba, Jahman Anikulapo and Chiege Alisigwe. KILAF is an initiative of Abdulkareem Mohammed-led Moving Image Limited. This edition featured several screenings, panel discussion, workshops, networking sessions and visits to historical sites.

Durban Filmmart open call for live action projects
PROJECT submissions for the 15th Durban FilmMart (DFM), Africa’s leading film finance and co-production market opened on November 14, 2023 and closes on January 20, 2024.  The 15th DFM, scheduled to hold from July19 to 22, 2024 in Durban, South Africa, is the flagship event of the Durban FilmMart Institute and was named in UNESCO’s 2021 Film Trends in Africa Report as ‘the continent’s best film market’.  The event is designed to generate visibility for African content and talent and create partnerships to further the development and production of African cinema. “Over the last 15 years, DFM has attracted filmmakers from across the continent with unique African stories with many of them generating global interest and winning awards both internationally and locally,” said Magdalene Reddy, Director of DFMI. “In just the last 12 months, DFM alumni projects have premiered at Sundance (Mami Wata), won awards at the Cannes Film Festival (Goodbye Julia and Mother of All Lies) and have been selected as their countries’ entry for next year’s Academy Awards (Goodbye Julia and Mami Wata).” Full-length feature and documentary film projects and series content with Africans in one of the three key creative roles (writers, directors and producers) that are looking for co-producers, financiers, sales agents, streamers, broadcasters and funders, are invited to submit.  The independent selection panel will choose up to 10 documentaries and 10 fiction feature length film projects from the submissions. Selected projects will be announced in early May 2024. The application criteria can be sourced at  www.durbanfilmmart.co.za while eventual application can be made through the Durban FilmMart Institute website: https://durbanfilmmart.co.za/pitch-and-finance-forum-application/.

Nigerian film, Mami Wata, secures Berlinale World Cinema Fund for distribution
In the 39th jury session of the Berlinale World Cinema Fund (WCF), the juries made 14 funding recommendations for projects from Argentina, Chile, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Iran, Israel, Mozambique, Nigeria, the Republic of Belarus, Rwanda, Senegal and Thailand. The current funding pot of eleven production and three distribution grants amounts to a total of 360,000 euros. “Looking at the outcome of the most recent WCF jury meeting, we are amazed: these future films display strength, courage and astonishing creativity. Most of the funded WCF projects delve deep into our world and its multifaceted complexity: Cinematic views of a world that is hard to decipher, often with characters who may live a long way away from us and yet seem very familiar. This is cinema as empathy and empathy as a cross-border take on life. We are delighted to support these projects,” comments Vincenzo Bugno, head of WCF, on the funding recommendations.

Vincenzo Bugno

 

The WCF jury made its selection from 194 submitted projects from a total of 62 countries. The funding recommendations encompass funding in the amount of 360,000 euros. The members of the jury are the documentary film producer and documentary creative advisor Marta Andreu (Spain), the director, screenwriter and producer Ayşe Polat (Germany), film scholar and curator Viola Shafik (Germany / Egypt) and Vincenzo Bugno (Italy / Germany), the head of the WCF. Additionally, the jurors for WCF Africa are the producer, festival director of the pan-African film festival FESPACO and the Berlin festival Afrikamera, Alex Moussa Sawadogo (Burkina Faso) and the filmmaker and curator Dorothee Wenner (Germany). Mami Wata, the award-winning film by director: C.J. “Fiery” Obasi (Nigeria) secured Euro 3000 for the German Cinema release of the film which opened across cinemas in UK last week. Other grantees include Demba, a film from Senegal by Mamadou Dia which got Euro 35,000 as production funding, and DRC’s Baloji whose film Augure (Omen), secured Euro 8000 for German cinema release of award-winning film. Since 2004, the Berlinale World Cinema Fund has been successfully supporting film production in regions characterized by an insufficient film infrastructure by virtue of its increasingly differentiated funding programme (WCF, WCF Europe, WCF Africa, WCF ACP) and advocating cultural diversity in German cinemas.
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