Film Africa 2014 brings African cinema to the UK


The Royal African Society’s annual Film Africa festival will screen 85 films, including 24 premiers from across 23 different African countries, from 31 October to 9 November in London. The Royal African Society is an organisation which fosters a better understanding of Africa in the UK and throughout the world.

Tala Hadid’s The Narrow Frame of Midnight will open the festival while Abderrahmane Sissako’s Timbuktu has been selected as the closing film. Other noteworthy films featuring at Film Africa are: Olivier Delahaye and Dani Kouyaté’s Soleils, Sana Na N’Hada’s Kadjike, Noaz Deshe’s White Shadow (executive produced by Ryan Gosling), Hicham Lasri’s They Are the Dogs, and Dieudo Hamadi’s National Diploma.

Sheila Ruiz, Manager of Film Africa, says: “The films in this year's festival continue to reveal new images and nuanced narratives of Africa, which we know London audiences are eager to see and engage with. There is really something for everyone and we look forward to yet another successful festival!”

The year 2014 has been a benchmark for a number of African countries, which will be reflected in the film programme.

The festival will host a nation-wide slate of iconic South African films titled ‘South Africa at 20: The Freedom Tour’. The line-up includes Lionel Rogosin's 1959 classic Come Back, Africa, the award-winning Four Cornersdirected by Ian Gabriel, and Rehad Desai’s controversial documentary Miners Shot Down about the 2012 Marikana massacre.

In celebration of 60 years of independence in Algeria, Film Africa 2014 will present a programme of Algerian films which highlight the creative work of a new generation of courageous filmmakers. Titled ‘Algerian Cinema: Towards a New Wave’ the programme is testament to the country’s shifting filmmaking landscape.

A number of documentary filmmakers will portray their interpretation of African literary and music scenes in this year’s film programme, which includes UK and London premiers of Silvia Voser’s Ken Bugul – Nobody Wants Her, Rachel Samuel’s Asni: Courage, Passion & Glamour in Ethiopia, Lebogang Rasethaba’s Future Sound of Mzansi, and Mário Patrocinio’s I Love Kuduro.

Zeinab Badawi, chair of the Royal African Society, says: “Film Africa 2014 is presenting a variety of powerful and compelling narratives from the continent on film. I think Film Africa is doing a marvellous job in bringing untold stories to the fore.”

Other Film Africa 2014 programme highlights include:

• The Industry Forum at the BFI: a free event which informs on the business of African cinema
• The Baobab Award for Best Short Film
• Film Africa LIVE! music nights featuring the best African music in London
• A schools screening programme
• A spotlight on Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) African cinema
• Female filmmakers and women-centred stories
• Over 20 filmmakers and guests in attendance

Film Africa 2014 will take place across 11 venues, including the Hackney Picturehouse, Ritzy Brixton, BFI Southbank, Ciné Lumière, Rich Mix and the South London Gallery.

Visit the Film Africa website for more information.