All set for AMAA gala night


Preparations are in high gear for the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) gala night slated for June 24 in Kigali.

The event will bring together outstanding African filmmakers, actors and actresses in 28 different movie categories. Over 150 African movie makers are expected to grace the event at the Kigali Conference and Exhibition Village, the former Camp Kigali.

It’s the first time Rwanda is hosting the gala night.

This year, A Place for Myself, a film by Clementine Dusabejambo, is the only Rwandan entry in the awards. A Place for Myself addresses the plight of persons with albinism, and follows the life of a five-year-old girl, Elikia, whose classmates stereotype her based on her skin colour.

The film scooped the highest prize, the Golden Dhow at the 2016 edition of the Zanzibar International Film Festival, among many other accolades.

This year, the film continued its winning streak, clinching two awards at the Pan African Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou (FESPACO); the prestigious Thomas Sankara Prize, and the La Chance Award.

A Place for Myself was nominated for the Efere Ozako award for Best Short Film, and will contest for the prize with short film entries from Nigeria, Ghana, Angola, and Senegal.

By press time, Dusabejambo was not available for comment as her phone calls went unanswered.

The AMA Awards gala night will also be graced by famous African movie actors and actresses such as Ramsey Nouah from Nigeria, and film directors and producers such as Ghana’s Lydia Forson, Nigeria’s Emem Isongo, Nkem Owoh, and Rita Dominic. Nigerian band Maestros will entertain guests.

The Africa Movie Academy Awards was founded by Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, a Nigerian filmmaker and entertainment executive and run through the Africa Film Academy. The awards are staged annually to recognise excellence in the African movie industry and to unite the African continent through arts and culture.

Other objectives of the AMA Awards are; to develop young filmmakers through creation of channels of distribution, establishment of rural cinemas to promote African culture, and offering professional development and networking opportunities.

Filmmakers will be competing in various film categories like Best Short Film, Best Animation, Best Documentary, Best Film in African Language, Best Film by an African Living Abroad, Best Diaspora Short Film, Best Diaspora Documentary, and Best Diaspora Feature, among others.

This year, Nigerian filmmakers got the highest number of nominations, clinching 43 of the 136 slots in the general competitive categories.