By Daisy Nandeche Okoti
Published May 4, 2015
Nairobi’s Slum Film Festival (SFF) is still receiving films for screening till June 30, 2015. The festival, that marks five years in 2015 and is scheduled for August 24-29, shows films on informal settlements.
Edinburgh-based Africa in Motion (AiM) is also inviting filmmakers of African nationality to submit short films of no longer than 30 minutes and/or documentary films of 30 minutes or more for AiM 2015 competitions. The deadline for entries is June 29, 2015 for the short film competition and July 17, 2015 for the documentary competition. AiM 2015 festival will take place October 23-November 1 in Edinburgh and Glasgow cities.
Solomon Mwendwa, the Director of SFF says they are “inviting professional and amateur filmmakers from across the continent who hail from informal settlements or who make films about informal settlements to submit their works for exhibition and competition during the festival.”
Based on the theme of Reels of Hope, Mwendwa says the 2015 edition of the Slum Film Festival will take place in Nairobi’s Kibera, Mathare and Kawangware and in Thika’s Kiandutu, Mombasa’s Bangladesh and Kisumu’s Nyalenda and Manyatta slums.
“Unlike during the first four editions when we only had screenings in Nairobi, this year’s edition will be spread across the five major informal settlement areas in the country in order to build on SFF’s mission of taking films to the people,” Mwendwa says. He however laments that though the film submission period opened in February 2015, “we have only received 40 entries so far. Hopefully, we can get more submissions before the deadline June 30, 2015 deadline.”
Lamenting what he describes as “lack of enthusiasm when it comes to actively seeking information about initiatives that were built to benefit Kenyans”, Mwendwa says. “We will have five screening centres during the festival and we are working to mobilise people through the various partner organisations as well as community-based groups to create awareness about this festival.”
Justine Atkinson, the AiM Festival Manager, says the aim of AiM is to support “young and emerging filmmakers from Africa. Filmmakers who enter must not have made a feature-length film previously. We call for short films completed in 2013 or after. All genres are welcome (including fiction, documentary, animation and experimental work).”
Shortlisted short films and documentaries, Atkinson says, will be announced in August 2015 and screened during the festival.
Both AiM’s competitions are free to enter, with downloadable entry forms and guidelines at africa-in-motion.org.uk/short-film-competition/ and africa-in-motion.org.uk/documentary-film-competition/.