The film “Tembelle” by Ugandan director Morris Mugisha won the Dakhla Grand Prix in the feature film category at Tuesday’s closing ceremony of the 11th Dakhla International Film Festival.
By Hicham Alaoui
The Jury Prize for this festival, initiated by the ‘Association pour l’animation culturelle et artistique dans les provinces du Sud’, went to the feature film “Sahari-Slem Wsaa” by Moroccan director Moulay Taieb Bouhanana.
The Best Actress Award went to the actresses in the film “Mayouya” by Congolese director Claudia Yoka, while the Best Actor Award was awared to Moroccan actor Saad Mouaffac for his role in the film “L’esclave.”
In the same category, a special mention from the jury members was claimed by the film “Amani” by Comorian director Ahmed Toiouil.
In the short film category, Senegalese film “Astel” by Ramata Toulaye Sy won the Grand Prix de Dakhla while the prize for best direction went to the Malian film “$75,000” by Moise Togo.
The prize for best screenplay went to the Moroccan film “Story,” directed by Mohamed Bouhari.
In a speech to mark the occasion, festival president Zine El Abidine Charafeddine emphasised that the success of this year’s event was the culmination of teamwork, noting that for six days, young people from the Dakhla-Oued Eddahab region debated film-related topics and benefited from training workshops.
This edition, he continued, was marked by the presence of a host of artists, producers, directors, critics and writers from Morocco and several Arab and African countries, noting that this festival aims to bring cinema closer to the inhabitants of the city of Dakhla, through the screening of a series of Moroccan, Arab and African films.
Cameroonian writer Freida Ekotto, head of the Department of African Studies at the University of Michigan (USA) and president of the jury for the official competition was impressed by the quality of the films presented, describing the future of African cinema as promising.
This major film festival celebrated African cinema with filmmakers from 16 African countries namely Cameroon, Mauritius, Angola, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Uganda, Central African Republic, Rwanda, Union of Comoros, Benin, Congo, Senegal, Somalia, Tunisia, Egypt, Mauritania and Morocco.