By STEPHEN KAPAMBWE –
BETWEEN Rings – the Esther Phiri story – was this week among seven films directed by AfriCAN women at the Royal African Society (RAS) Annual Film Festival which opened in the UK last week.
This is according to information published on the RAS blog as well as Between Rings Producer Jesse Chisi.
The seven films were selected for screening by award-winning Nigerian-Finnish writer, speaker and commentator on African feminism Minna Salami, aka Ms Afropolitan, who is considered a Friend of Film Africa.
The 2015 edition of the festival, described as the UK’s largest festival of African film and culture celebrating the best African fiction and documentary films, opened on 30th October and runs up to 8th November. Over 60 films from 26 African countries will be earmarked for screening at the festival.
The RAS blog described Between Rings, which is co-directed by Finish film maker Sala Sorri and Zambia’s Jessie Chisi, as an astute documentary about Zambia’s first professional female boxer Esther Phiri who has been cast as a tenacious woman full of the contrasts, conflicts and inner tensions that come with fame and celebrity.
All Is Well by Pocas Poscoal (Angola), Price of Love by Hermon Hailay (Ethiopia), Love the One You Love by Jenna Cato Bass (South Africa),
Alma by Christa Eka Assam (Cameroon), Tjitji the Himba Girl by Lomboleni Oshosheni Hiveluah (Namibia) and Ayanda by Sara Blecher (South Africa) are the rest of the films produced by African women which were selected for screening.
Minna Salami said, “The topics of the seven films range from coming-of-age stories to romantic quandaries to defiance of patriarchal traditions. But as films directed by African women, what they share in common is that they all contribute to the articulation of a female voice in African film.
She said the productions constitute a voice which unwaveringly insists on being heard (or seen) no matter how profound, trivial, heavy, entertaining, serious, informative or seductive.
Launched in 2011, the festival has become a leading attraction that annually draws London audiences a core programme of fiction and documentary films alongside a vibrant series of accompanying events, including director question and answer sessions, panel discussions, talks, workshops, master classes, family activities and Film Africa LIVE music nights.
Between Rings is also premiering in Germany on 9th December, 2015 in Berlin.
The Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival has described the documentary as “an exceptionally realistic film which avoids politically correct clichés in favour of a portrait that makes space for the contrasts, conflicts and inner tensions that are also a part of Esther Phiri’s story.”