On Saturday, Dec. 1, the first African Film Festival opened at the Cultural Heritage Cinema Theatre in Arusha, Tanzania. This exciting and innovative event was organized by The College of Global Studies at Arcadia University in Arusha and by Hakika Entertainment.
The free, one-day film festival showcases movies from all over Africa that tell the stories of African peoples in their own way. The festival screened Tanzanian and Nigerian movies as well as documentaries from TCGS students in Arusha and from students at Kenyatta University. The organizers hope to make the festival an annual event to showcase the best in African cinema.
The veteran Nollywood actress Clarion Chukwurah and Bongo movie star, Vincent Kigosi, were in attendance at the festival. They talked with the audience about their movie careers and signed autographs. Officials from the Ministry of Information in Kenya were also in attendance and addressed the participants. The Chair of the Kenya Film Commission stated that the region has a good population for local production market but tremendous work needs to be done about copyright infringement.
Roland Adjovi, Academic Director of Arcadia in Tanzania, and Akpor Otebele, Instructor for African Film, played key roles in launching the festival and sharing the cultural experience with students at the Arcadia Center for East African Studies in Arusha, which was established by Arcadia University in 2007. It is located in the Nyerere Centre for Peace Research, a research and training facility set up jointly by Arcadia University and the East African Community.