ACT OF LOVE wins Best Short Film at 9th MASHARIKI African Film Festival in Rwanda

With an astounding 10 Festival Selections, 9 Nominations and 2 Awards, within just 6 Weeks from its Premiere, ACT OF LOVE has also just won Best Short Film at the 9th MASHARIKI African Film Festival in Kigali last Weekend!

“We had 2,192 Applications, from 143 Countries, for the 5 Categories of best Feature Film, Documentary, Short Film, TV Series and Iziwachu (Rwandan Short Film)”, says Mr. Fabrizio Colombo, Artistic Director. “ACT OF LOVE emerged as the Best Short Film from 28 Nominees from across Africa”.

This was after the Film came Runner-up for Best Kenyan Short at the Under Our Skin International Film Festival for Human Rights in Kenya, earlier in November 2023; following-on from winning the People’s Choice Award at the inaugural Sauti Zetu Film Festival, held in Dar-es-Salaam – Tanzania, during October 2023.

To-date ACT OF LOVE, has also been Selected for the prestigious 2023 Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF) in Tanzania, 2023 Swahili International Film Festival & Awards in Kenya, 2023 Fragments Festival in the United Kingdom, 2023 Kugoma Film Forum in Mozambique, 2023 Fankeenna Film Festival in Somaliland, the 2023 Hollywood African Cinema Connection (HACC) Film Festival in America, 2023 Global Film Exhibition in America, 2023 Botswana International Film Festival and Kenya Film Commission’s Reel County Film Festival 2024.

Furthermore, this Film about Post-Partum Depression, has received six Nominations (the Highest amongst the Short Films) at the inaugural Mombasa International Film Festival this Week, as Best Short Film, Best Scriptwriter – Shelly Gitonga, Best Director – Eric Mwangi, Best Actress – Mwixx Mutinda, Best Editor – Koome Mwirebua, Owino Owano & Cidi M, and Best Sound Designer – Patrick Mbaru (Saint P).

Inspired by the Writer’s true story, ACT OF LOVE (16+) is a moving Short Film set in Nairobi, about Juliana (Mwixx Mutinda) – a young mother, who holds on to sanity by a thread, as her world is turned upside down in search of a livelihood.

“ACT OF LOVE is a Film that makes society acknowledge the ugly side of Motherhood”, says Ms. Shelly Gitonga – the Writer. “Statistics show that Post-Partum Depression (PPD) affects 10-20% of Women globally; but in Africa, the situation is worse, with 10-32% of Women suffering from PPD.”

“In Kenya, the prevalence of this Maternal Mental Health challenge is reported as 11-13%, affecting the well-being of Mothers, Newborns, Families and Communities”, says Ms. Shirleen Wangari, the Producer, at Blackwell Films. “The condition can impair a Mother’s ability to care for her Child and, in extreme cases, can lead to post-partum Psychosis, Suicide and/or Infanticide.”

“As well as having ACT OF LOVE worldwide on MyMovies.Africa™”, says Ms. Trushna Buddhdev-Patel, Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer & Content Director of YAKWETU™ – the Distributor, “the Film is also now Available for Licensing to other Video On Demand (VOD) services, Television and Non-Theatrical opportunities like Airlines, so that as many Africans and Diasporans as possible, can watch this important Film.”

“We have also begun special Screenings to underserved Communities of Women and Healthcare Workers around the Kenya and Africa, to raise further Awareness and spark Conversations for supportive Action on Post-Partum Depression, Maternal Health and Mental Health”, says Ms. Chloe Genga, Impact Producer at LightBox Africa. “And we’re open to Collaborating with any Partners who share our Vision”.

ACT OF LOVE was Produced by Blackwell Films, in conjunction with Ripple Productions, through Funding by Some Fine Day Pix, GIZ, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation & Development of Germany and DocuBox East Africa Fund; with Support Naomi Mburuh Films, Film Studios and Jenga Leo.

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