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Elson Kambalu eyes film festivals

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Visual artist and filmmaker Elson Kambalu has said that he is not in the film industry to make up numbers but rather he wants to utilise his potential and do more.

Kambalu, who has just premiered his movie Mlandu WA Njinga/ Case of a Bicycle, said Tuesday that he was serious with film making.

“There are so many stories to tell. Of course it’s expensive to produce movies but this is an area I have passion and all what matters is the skill and how to executive it. At the moment let me also say that I would like to take Mlandu Wa Njinga to different international film festivals and win wards,” Kambalu said.

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The recipient of the 2015 Art Award in the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Innovations Award, Kambalu said having premiered Mlandu Wa Njinga in Lilongwe recently, he got so many connections.

“The response during the premiere in Lilongwe was good. I got so many connections and I am hoping that I will break through and have the film screen in different international festivals and even win awards,” he said.

Kambalu, who owns La Galleria in Lilongwe and has been instrumental supporting other artists, said from Lilongwe, the movie will now screen in Blantyre end May.

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“We are still looking for venues but all is set for us to screen the movie in Blantyre end May. We will have will have two screenings, one standard and another one executive,” the artist said.

Despite still being new in filmmaking and coming from a visual arts background, Kambalu said the film industry is making progress.

“Of course there are other movies that still have problems with quality but there is so much potential and progress. As I said we have so many stories to tell as Malawians and I want to be part of that,” he said.

Kambalu said film is an area that has given him the platform to reach out to more people.

“Film is a complete form of art and it encompasses a lot of things and in Mlandu Wa Njinga I had a chance to put in other art forms in the movie such as painting and music,” he said.

In Mlandu Wa Njinga, Kambalu worked with musicians such as JJ, Agorosso, Malala and Jaco Jana.

Kambalu’s journey in filmmaking started in 2015 when he worked on a short film titled Going South.

The short film went on to claim two awards at the Lilongwe Short Film Festival a brainchild of Lake of Stars Festival.

Mlandu Wa Njinga is a feature length fictitious movie which runs for two hours.

The film tells the story of a young man called Ntaja, who comes out of prison and later goes on a search for a woman he wanted to marry prior to his incarceration.

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