The Uganda Film Festival culminated in an awards dinner at Kampala Serena Hotel gardens on Friday night. For an industry that is only growing, over 100 film submissions is a multitude, which shows just how much potential is here.
Nigeria’s Femi Odugbemi, chief judge on the multinational panel said it took three months of pre selection, which was done electronically. Films were critiqued for sound, story telling, casting, performance and music.
African Child, won an accolade for Best Student Film, while Walk With Me scooped the Best Short Film gong, beating a rather impressive In Reality. When Michael Wawuyo who stars in Boda Boda Thieves won Best Supporting Actor for the same movie that won best Cinematography, a unison celebration of agreement cast through the audience.
Young Farooq Mutebi took home the Best Actor award for a believable and emotionally compelling character in Call 112. The night’s surprise was a double win for Best Actress Nisha Kalema (The Tailor). Galz About Town where Nisha features also won the Best Costume award.
The biggest winner of the night was Joseph SK of Zenken Films (in-set) whose movies House Arrest and Call 112, scooped a total five awards, with him winning Best Director and Best Feature Film. He gets to travel for the Cannes Film Festival in France and shall receive financial support from Uganda Communications Commission. Each award came with a token laptop.
Music performances from Jose Chameleone, Eddy Kenzo and traditional dance troupes went down well with the dinner that served drum sticks, and a range of baked/fried delicacies. Despite the dress theme being deeply Ugandan, several guests turned up in the usual, despite traces of kanzu, a few busuuti, and African fabric (kitenge). All together, the festival was successful and next year should only get better.