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‘I Am Not A Witch’ to open Tarifa Film Festival

‘I AM Not A Witch’ by Zambian director Rungano Nyoni will open the 2018 Tarifa-Tangiers African Film Festival, and compete for best feature film.

The programme for FCAT’s 15th edition brings together eighty films divided into six sections – Long-Sightedness, Shortly, Afroscope, Around Bouanani, Afrodescendants and 15 Years of FCAT – including thirty six premieres in Spain, and two world premieres.

According to a statement, ‘I Am Not A Witch’ will open this year’s festival.

“A tragic tale whose magical realism moved the audience at last year’s Cannes Festival, [‘I Am Not A Witch’] tells the story of a young girl held in one of the witch camps which continue to exist in some African countries. Once again, artistic quality took precedence over content in the selection of the films from the African continent to be screened in Tarifa and Tangiers from 27th April to 5th May, not only in two different cities, but in two different continents and two different worlds,” read the statement. “This year, the FCAT programme features two Zambian films. ‘I Am Not A Witch’ by Rungano Nyoni will open the festival in Tarifa and Tangiers, and is also among the 14 feature films which will compete in the Long-Sightedness competition section. Meanwhile, FCAT celebrates its 15th anniversary with the selection of 15 significant films from previous editions. These include another film by Nyoni, the short film ‘Mwansa The Great’, which won the prize for best short film at the 2011 edition of FCAT, among other prizes.”

It stated that several films, including seven fiction features and seven documentaries, all produced between 2017 and 2018, would compete this year in the festival’s official section, Long-Sightedness.

“The fiction titles feature a significant majority of productions from the Maghreb and Arab regions (Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria and Egypt), while Sub-Saharan Africa is more widely represented in the competition documentaries, many of which focus on the political state and relationships between the population and governments of various African countries (Burkina Faso, Gabon, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo). These activist movements replicate the Arab Springs which took place in several countries in the north of the continent several years ago,” it stated.

“Is there hope for a democratic transition this time, as has recently occurred in other African countries? A response to this question is sought in documentaries such as ‘Boxing Libreville’ (Amédée Pacôme Nkoulou), ‘Kinshasa Makambo’ (Dieudo Hamadi), ‘Vote Off’ (Fayçal Hammoun) and even ‘Synaesthesia, Cairo 13’ (Maged El-Mahedy). The latter will premiere at the same time in Spain and Morocco during the festival, while Lendemains incertains (Uncertain Future), by Eddy Munyaneza, which focuses on the uncertainty provoked by protests against the Burundian President, Pierre Nkurunziza, in 2015, will have its world premiere at FCAT 2018.“

It stated that the current emphasis on incorporation of female values into the public sphere is also apparent in the cinema of a continent, which is witnessing the way the changes are becoming a reality in the social imagery of certain countries.

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