More than just a film festival

12 October 2021 | Cultural

“Life is about laughter, sadness, joy, wonders and timeless stories.”

Jeanette Diergaardt



The European Union (EU) will be hosting the European Film Festival for the first time in Namibia, under the theme ‘life is about laughter’, celebrating award-winning Namibian and European stories.

The festival started on 6 October and will run until 1 December at the Opera House at The Village. Lovers of film and storytelling can view the films every Wednesday at no cost.

“We should be able to tell our own stories from our own perspectives and our own narrative to transform, evolve and inspire,” Twaku Kayofa, the communications officer of the Delegation of the EU to Namibia, said.

The film festival will be serving more than entertainment and will be providing know-how on film-making to participants. Scriptwriting will be a part of the masterclasses that will take place as well as training on directing and producing, from 11 to 14 October. For upcoming and aspiring actors, there will be an acting workshop taking place from 16 to 18 November.

The training will be provided by a high calibre of experts. Simona Nobile, who has been in the industry for 16 years and worked in various countries in Europe as well as Los Angeles, is a member of the 100 Autori Association (key Italian directors’/screenwriters association). Her fluency in various languages has opened up doors for her, directing and producing films in Italian, French, German, Italian - her mother tongue - and Spanish.

Award-winning producer Ama Ampadu, the producer and founder of Monday Films in Ghana, will also be sharing her expertise in filmography. She uses her skills and expertise to empower Africans and to teach them the value of the production of films. She is a part of the Hot Docs-Blue Ice Fund 2021 Selection Committee, a grant that enables Africans to tell their stories through documentaries.

Vincent Riotta, hailing from London, will be teaching participants the art of acting. He has appeared in notable TV series and films in the United States and the United Kingdom. He also won best actor at the Barcelona Film Festival in 1995.

The courses are tailor-made to the needs of Namibians as the EU has been working closely with the Namibian Film Commission to find out what is needed to push Namibian films in the right direction.

“The opportunities are limitless,” Kayofa said about the opportunities for Namibian film production outside of the African continent.

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