Film

Cinemafrique: 'Half Of A Yellow Sun' Finally Gets A Nigerian Release, SA Blaxploitation Flick 'Joe Bullet,' Oakland's Matatu Film Festival + More

The latest in Okayafrica's Cinemafrique features African film and TV news on Half Of A Yellow Sun's Nigerian debut, Joe Bullet and more.


Welcome to the latest installment of Okayafrica's Cinemafrique series. Every other Thursday we highlight the latest film and television news from throughout Africa and the diaspora. This week we take a look at the life and legacy of anti-apartheid activist Andrew Mlangeni as told by Future Sound of Mzansi filmmaker Lebogang Rasethaba, Half Of A Yellow Sun's impending Nigerian theatrical release (finally!), what's screening at Oakland's second ever Matatu Film Festival, the New York African Film Festival's free and outdoor Cinema Under The Stars movie/music series and the lifting of a forty year ban on one of South Africa's first blaxploitation movies. Click on for the full scoop.

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Photo courtesy of Abessi Akhamie.

The Nigerian Shorts Program at This Year's New York African Film Festival Challenges the Nollywood Status Quo

These films at the 25th New York African Film Festival features a new generation of filmmakers who are transforming our understanding of the continent.

The 25th New York African Film Festival is underway, continuing to lead the celebration of film from Africa and its diaspora. This year's theme, "25 Years of the New York African Film Festival," pays homage to the pioneers of African cinema while marking the passing of the baton to a new generation of African visual storytellers who continue to transform and extend our understanding of the continent and its diaspora. The festival also commemorates what would've been Nelson Mandela's centennial birthday.

The programming at Lincoln Center runs until May 22, but we luckily have the rest of the month to enjoy screenings at BAMcinématek in Brooklyn and Maysles Cinema in Harlem. Through these venues, the festival will present 66 films from 25 countries.

"Since the founding of the New York African Film Festival, African cinema has moved beyond the art house and become the lingua franca of Africa and its diaspora," Mahen Bonetti, AFF Executive Director and NYAFF Founder, says in a statement . "From Nigeria to South Africa and Brazil, regional film industries are breaking down the artificial demarcations of the colonial era. For this 25th milestone, the festival is proud to showcase this new wave of a borderless cinema, which uses the tactility and immediacy of storytelling to offer audiences opportunities to imagine other futures for Africa and its diaspora."

OkayAfrica is proud to co-present NYAFF's Shorts Program 2: Naija Stories, during the festival. These seven films, which range from documentary to narrative, features a stunning array of storytelling challenging the Nollywood status quo by filmmakers from Nigeria and its diaspora.

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News Brief

OkayAfrica's Weekend Guide: Memorial Day Edition

There’s a deluge of cool events happening across Africa and the diaspora this weekend and OkayAfrica’s weekend guide is where you’ll find them.

There’s a deluge of cool events happening across Africa and the diaspora this weekend and OkayAfrica’s weekend guide is where you’ll find them.

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Photo courtesy of CSA Global.

In Conversation with Congolese NBA Player Emmanuel Mudiay: 'I want more African players in the NBA.'

The Utah Jazz player talks about being African in the NBA, supporting basketball in the DRC and how 'everybody knows about Burna Boy'.

Inspired by his basketball-playing older brothers, by second grade, Emmanuel Mudiay already knew that he wanted to play in the American National Basketball Association. Then in 2001 his family, fleeing the war in Democratic Republic of Congo, sought asylum in the United States.

In America, Mudiay saw basketball as a way for him to improve his situation. After impressive high school and college careers, he moved to China to play pro ball. Picked 7th overall in the 2015 NBA draft, the now 23-year-old guard has made a name for himself this season coming off the bench for the Utah Jazz.

Mudiay attests to the sport having changed not only his life but that of his siblings. Basketball gave them all a chance at a good education and the opportunity to dream without conditions. Now he wants to see other talented African players make it too.

We caught up with him to talk about his experience as an African player in the NBA, his hopes for basketball on the African continent and who he and his teammates jam out to in their locker rooms.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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University lecturer and activist Doctor Stella Nyanzi (L) reacts in court as she attends a trial to face charges for cyber-harassment and offensives communication, in Kampala, on April 10, 2017. (Photo by GAEL GRILHOT/AFP via Getty Images)

Jailed Ugandan Activist, Stella Nyanzi, Wins PEN Prize for Freedom of Expression

The outspoken activist, who is currently serving a prison sentence for a poem she wrote about the president's mother's vagina, won for her resistance "in front of a regime that is trying to suppress her."

Stella Nyanzi, the Ugandan academic, activist, and vocal critic of President Yoweri Museveni has been awarded the 2020 Oxfam Novib/PEN International award for freedom of expression, given to writers who "continue to work for freedom of expression in the face of persecution."

Nyanzi is currently serving a 15 month sentence for "cyber harassment" after she published a poem in which she wrote that she wished "the acidic pus flooding Esiteri's (the president's mother) vaginal canal had burn up your unborn fetus. Burn you up as badly as you have corroded all morality and professionalism out of our public institutions in Uganda."

According to the director of PEN International, Carles Torner, her unfiltered outspokenness around the issues facing her country is what earned her the award. "For her, writing is a permanent form of resistance in front of a regime that is trying to suppress her," said Torner at the award ceremony.

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