Two Ghanaian student films have been nominated for award at the Pan African Film and Television Festival (FESPACO), underway in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso.
“The Mob” by Gamel Baba Apalayine Jnr, and “The Photographer”, by Ibrahim Yakubu, both of the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana, had been nominated for the Student Film Category, based on “ingenuity and unique story lines”.
FESPACO is held biennially in Ouagadougou and accepts for competition only films by African filmmakers and produced mainly in Africa.
It offers film professionals in the continent the opportunity to establish working relationships, exchange ideas and to promote their work.
The goal is to contribute to the promotion of African cinema and culture.
Gamel, who spoke to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) after the nomination of his film, could not hide his joy after the nomination of his film, saying, “I feel really happy”.
He had two years before attended the festival but only as an observer.
His film – “The Mob” uses the theme of sexuality to convey the message of acceptance, love and respect.
The theme is timely – comes amid the global debate over homosexuality, a topic which is quite present at the ongoing festival and evident in some of the movies that had already been screened.
Yakubu said he was excited to have made “this far” given the funding difficulties he had to struggle with.
“When you are doing the good stuff, you will always have support from the international bodies and individuals who really understand your craft. I hope to win”.
He confessed that the nomination came as a shock to him, because the film did not receive much praise from his lecturers.
“I am trying to let people know how domestic violence is spreading across the world in different dimensions” he said.
Should any of the two films win, a Ghanaian film would have won this category for the second time running.
Peter Owusu’s “Downside Up” won the award during the 2017 FESPACO.