Film

Cinemafrique: African Film & TV News On John Boyega In Star Wars, Barkhad Abdi Cast In Military Drone Thriller + More

The latest in Okayafrica's Cinemafrique series features African film & TV news on 'Star Wars: Episode VII' star John Boyega , Barkhad Abdi and more.


Barkhad Abdi To Star in Military Drones Thriller An Eye In The Sky

With an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor under his belt, Barkhad Abdi’s star is steadily on the rise. This week it was announced he'll be appearing alongside Colin Firth in an upcoming military drones thriller entitled Eye In The Sky. South Africa's Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, Ender’s Game) is set to direct. Still no word on a release date, but you can find more details on the plot below:

A group of leading terror suspects gather in a secluded safe house in Nairobi, Kenya, to plan a suicide bombing mission. Meanwhile, British, Kenyan and American intelligence units, working together, keep the terrorists under real-time surveillance using cameras mounted on a remotely piloted, heavily armed MQ-9 Reaper Drone: an "Eye in the Sky." But as the British & Americans prepare to assassinate the terror suspects using a Hellfire missile, launched from the unseen drone flying at 20,000 feet, a little Kenyan girl walks into the kill zone, selling bread.

(H/T to Shadow and Act)

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Interview
Photo: Benoit Peverelli

Interview: Oumou Sangaré Proves Why She's the Songbird of Wassoulou

We caught up with the Malian singer to talk about her new Acoustic album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

When Oumou Sangaré tells me freedom is at her core, I am not surprised. If you listen to her discography, you'll be hard-pressed to find a song that doesn't center or in some way touch on women's rights or child abuse. The Grammy award-winning Malian singer has spent a significant part of her career using her voice to fight for the rights of women across Africa and the world, a testimony to this is her naming her debut studio album Moussolou, meaning Woman. The album, a pure masterpiece that solidified Oumou's place amongst the greats and earned her the name 'Songbird of Wassoulou,' was a commercial success selling over 250,000 records in Africa and would in turn go on to inspire other singers across the world.

On her latest body of work Acoustic, a reworking of her critically acclaimed 2017 album Mogoya, Oumou Sangaré proves how and why she earned her accolades. The entirety of the 11-track album was recorded within two days in the Midi Live studio in Villetaneuse in 'live' conditions—with no amplification, no retakes or overdubs, no headphones. Throughout the album, using her powerful and raw voice that has come to define feminism in Africa and shaped opinions across the continent, Oumou boldly addresses themes like loss, polygamy and female circumcision.

We caught up with the Malian singer at the studio she is staying while in quarantine to talk about her new album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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