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Sqoop – Get Uganda entertainment news, celebrity gossip, videos and photosSqoop – Get Uganda entertainment news, celebrity gossip, videos and photos


iKon Awards: Second time the charm

When the awards were first announced last year, they were labelled a prestigious award whose value comes from within, just like many prestigious awards given out world over.

Invited guests are expected to dress up for the awards night. Photos/courtesy/Sauti Plus

If there is one thing iKon Awards started and may have to keep up with, it is glamourising local film – from the way they announce the nominees to the way they ensure everyone not only knows about the awards but equally wants to be there.

When the awards were first announced last year, they were labelled a prestigious award whose value comes from within, thus unlike Uganda Communication Commission’s famous gala awards, the iKon awards do not have a monetary attachment to them; it is the gesture that matters.

Of course, that was a move in the right direction. Most of the prestigious awards given out world over do not have money attached to them but the value they add. For instance, an Academy award will drive the markets to see the film in cinemas and the actor that wins one may have their fees double.
In Uganda on the other hand, the awards were only able to determine the rate card in the early years of the PAM Awards and a few editions of Abraynz Fashion and Style Awards. Award shows that have followed have struggled to sell their cause to the people practising the art, be it musicians, dancers or writers.

Nigerian actress Nancy Isiime with her

And filmmakers are not different.
The second edition of the iKon Awards took place at the Kampala Serena Hotel’s Victoria Conference Hall on Saturday and ATS, probably one of the new bold production houses out there, outdid themselves with the stage, screen strips and prompt productions. They always make you feel like you are watching something akin to the BET Awards – everything that Uganda Film Festival gala awards are not, productionwise.

The iKon Awards have their buts and they scream louder every year. For instance, last year, Nigerian actor Ramsey Noah was a guest and in the process won an award and this year, two Nigerians; Nancy Isiime and veteran actor Osita Iheme were guests and both walked away with awards, iKon Rising Star Africa and African iKon Award respectively.

Much as these awards are both in good faith and position the industry, inviting guests and later giving them awards seems odd. Of course way before the awards took place, there was a raging debate on X as to why they only invite Nigerians when Africa has very many celebrated filmmakers.
On a brighter side, however, the invitations are paying off in bits, for instance, during their stay, Isiime conducted a master class with actors and other filmmakers and at the awards, Noah promised that he would work on a collaborative project with Ugandans.

Some of the actors that turned up for the awards all glammed up.

There were a couple of take-aways at the awards night, such as former journalist and academia Polly Kamukama’s film Unheard ran over the night with seven wins, including Best Film and Best Director. Unheard follows a story of a woman who takes on powerful men to save a fishing village that was at the brink of being sold off.
The most outstanding moment of the night was the recognition of the contribution of Michael Wawuyo Sr. for the Lifetime Achievement Award. Several actors and actresses were seen hailing the veteran actor for helping them get to where they are.

Minister Betty Amongi promised to protect creatives’ intellectual property.

“This tall, dark-skinned man found me in the industry, but he has grown to become so superior in the technical bits of movie production. Even with such expertise, technical knowledge, and history of international recognition, Michael Wawuyo has never looked down upon us. He has always been humble instead of patronising the rest of us. We call him the best uncle in the Ugandan movie industry because he does literally everything, from make-up to acting, to production, and even helps in script writing.” Mariam Ndagire said as she presented the senior actor his accolade.

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