Posted by Larry Gleeson
Kenya’s film industry has seen a revival in recent years as the first edition of the NBO Film Festival was opened last Thursday.
The main feature at the first edition of the Film Festival was a drama entitled “Kati Kati ”, about the mystery that surrounds death.
‘Kati Kati’ a Swahili word , means Middle, it narrates the story of a young woman called ‘Kaleche’ who dies and moves on to the next life where others who have gone before her are trapped in a posthumous commune run by ‘Thoma’.
The film was written and directed by Mbithi Masya, a first time filmmaker, who said the story was deeply personal for him and his co-writer Mugambi Nthiga.
Kati Kati made its public Kenyan debut at a cinema in a Nairobi suburb where Hollywood and Bollywood films make up for almost all ticket sales.
The film won the Prize for the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).
According to the organizers, the festival is aimed at growing cinema-going audiences for notable content from around the world, but mostly to give local films a platform to help take the industry to the next level.
Creative players in the industry say there is little support from the government to grow local talent and not enough projects to offer regular professionals work despite claims by the Kenya Film Commission saying it was worth 2 billion US dollars in 2016 up from 600 million in 2007.