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Film industry makes strides

FLASHBACK—Mpondaminga (left), Sukali and Makunje (right) at a Fama presser

Film Association of Malawi (Fama) has said that the industry making headway despite the several challenges and that filmmakers are producing quality movies.

Fama President Gift Sukez Sukali said Thursday they achieved a lot in 2022 including hosting their first festival as well as hosting trainings and movie nights.

“2022 was an exciting year no doubt about that, there is so much that happened. People enjoyed films through movie nights we held. There is still more work to do but overall we are going the right direction,” Sukali said.

He said the two-day film festival which run under the theme ‘Filmmaking for Social Economic Growth and Cultural Preservation’ was the climax where filmmakers gathered to showcase their films and also reached out to various players including the government.

“We shared ideas on our work and it was also important to have players from the corporate world appreciate our work and the government. We had partners like MultiChoice Malawi doing their part as well as National Planning Commission,” the filmmaker, who produced a movie titled Fatsani: A Tale of Survival with HD Plus, said.

He said during the festival, they also had time to decorate players in the industry who had done well in 2022 and those that have contributed immensely to the growth of the film industry over the years.

Some of the players, who were decorated during the festival whose guest of honour was Zambian veteran actor Mr Nguzu real name Mutale Monde included Ashukile Mwakisulu, who excelled with his film All We Have is Us, Shemu Joyah, late Crispin Viyazyi and Joyce Mhango Chavula.

“We are looking forward to doing more in 2023. We are happy that filmmakers have been submitting their films in international platforms and so, we need to do more of that but in all that we still need to strive for quality for sure,” he said.

Sukali also hailed European Union (EU) for its support to the film industry through the Euro Film Festival.

“This is another platform that has offered the film industry more. Through Euro Film Festival last year we showcased some of our films and also got to appreciate what our friends are doing and at the same time, we also conducted trainings,” he said.

Sukali said 2023 promises more as they have also been able to be granted funding by Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma) through Copyright Fund.

MultiChoice Malawi Corporate Affairs Manager Zena Makunje, hailed Fama for creating a festival adding that at MultiChoice, “we really prioritise investing in the Malawian film and television industry to apply the efforts of organisations like Fama”.

Director of Arts in the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Wildlife Humphrey Mpondaminga also commended Fama for the strides made and that they will continue to work hand in hand with them.

Meanwhile, United States of America (USA)- based filmmaker Chaz is set to premiere his second film titled Misnomer later this year.

Having impressed with his previous movie Highbrow, Chaz is finalising Misnomer which digs deeper into abductions and killings of persons with albinism.

“We will announce the dates of the premiere once everything is in black and white. For now, we are still working on the film,” Chaz said Thursday.

However, the poster of the film is currently flying on social media and some of the actors starring in the movie include Gordon Timothy, Grace Rumsey, Ian Simbota, Mwai Simbota and Victor Kamwendo.

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