By: Steve Chipala
As Malawi continues to make strides towards promoting the film industry, the palm-fringed Mzuzu University (MZUNI), on Sunday afternoon played host to the International Images Film (IIF) mini festival for women April 2016.
Speaking to the lively audience after the festival, Malawi’s renowned award-winning movie star, Joyce Chavula, who was part of the IIF team, indicated that she was pleased with the turn up for the event and that there are more opportunities for Malawian young actors in the movie industry.
“I’m pleased with this overwhelming patronage. Driving all the way from Lilongwe, I never anticipated such a support from the audience. We’ve taken this festival to a number of universities here in Malawi but the turn up wasn’t all that impressive as we can see here. This has really impressed me. Let me also find this opportunity to encourage young actors from this university, from Mzuzu as well as across the country that there are so many open opportunities on the international film industry and what is required is determination, passion and hard work despite whatever glitches one may face,” said Chavula.
Commenting on the event, the Country Coordinator for the Lilongwe-based Story Club Malawi, Shadreck Chikoti, noted that Malawian artists should forge ahead in developing and exploring new avenues in their career.
“Malawi has the potential to make new strides in as far as the arts are concerned. In fact, I’m very proud to give you an example of one of the organisers of this event, Wesley Macheso, who is also a lecturer in the Department of Languages and Literature here at MZUNI, standing to my right here. Wesley’s short stories have been shortlisted in various short story competitions in Uganda and across the African continent, and in 2015 he won the Peer Gynt Literary awards. This is a vivid example that Malawian youths have the potential to make it in the arts,” said Chikoti.
The mini festival showcased two movies from Africa, ‘Two Villages Apart’, written by the renowned playwright Donald Mobide as a social commentary on the ripple effects of political hatred between Zimbabwe’s opposing sides, MDC and ZANU PF; as well as ‘Damaru’, a movie directed by Africa’s own, Agbor Obed.
The 2016 IIF festival was held in partnership with the Story Club Malawi. The IIF festival is an annual event that seeks to promote the movie industry across Africa and to accord an opportunity for African actors to get international exposure.