Nice CNN profile of British/Zambian filmmaker Rungano Nyoni, whose last film, the enchanting, whimsical Mwansa The Great, was a Focus Features Africa First short project, which I saw earlier this year at the New York African Film Festival.
The film centers on 8-year old Mwansa, who, in an attempt to prove he is a hero just like his late father, goes on a quest to find the “magical” substance necessary to fix his sister’s broken doll, and finally prove that he is in fact destined for greatness.
I found it to be a touching tribute to childhood innocence and dreams, with a nod to the familiar struggles between African tradition and modernity; on the other side of Mwansa’s small village, sits an industrial plant mining the earth for minerals – the “magical” substance Mwansa seeks to rebuild his sister’s doll.
It was a lot of fun to watch this, notably the sequences in which we are presented with filmic visualizations of each child’s imagination and perception of themselves.
The film has screened at 19 Film Festivals worldwide this year alone, winning awards, acclaim and fans along the way.
Looking forward to what’s next for Rungano. In the meantime, watch the CNN profile below: