The day after the publication of the selections for the 27th edition of the Ecrans Noirs Festival, on 03rd August 2023, there is a great deal of satisfaction. On the Facebook and Instagram pages of the African Actors, script writers and directors who have seen their productions on the shortlist, abundant  publications, as well as  wishes and thanks. The list of films selected for the occasion is not long or exhaustive. Around sixty cinematographic works would have made the cut from the hundreds of applications received during the long-month  call for films (from 1st to 30th July 2023). All of which is sure to arouse the enthusiasm of lovers of the silver screen in Cameroon.

Known for their legendary hospitality, and their love of cinema and filmmakers from around the world, Cameroonian movie  fans will have the chance to discover, among the 58 films and series to be screened at Ecrans Noirs next October, 22 productions from Africa and elsewhere. These films are to be found exclusively in 5 of the festival’s 7 categories.

In the International film feature category, 9 of the 11 films selected come from abroad. From eight different countries, Senegal dominates the scene with 3 films selected. These include « Xale, Les Bessures de L’enfance », by director Moussa Sene Absa, «  Mouton de Sada » by Pape Lopy, and « Que Le père soit » by Clarence Delgado.

The other foreign countries each have a film in this sélections, including « Shimoni » by Wamai Angela Wanjiku (Kenya), « Sira » by Appoline Traoré from Burkina Faso, «  Le Bleu de Craftan » by Maryam Touzani (Morocco), «  The Bride » by Myriam U Birara (Rwanda), « B19 » by Ahmad Abdalla (Egypt), and « Augure » by Congolese filmmaker Baloji. Cameroon is also back with two films.

Among the feature-length documentaries, Burkina Faso is in the lead with 2 films, as is the host country of the Ecrans Noirs Festival. The six films selected include : « Le Taxi, le cinema et moi » by  Zampalire Salam and « Le Galop » by Elenore Yameogo from Burkina Faso, «  Eat Bitter » by Central African Filmmaker Pascal Appora-Gnekindy and «  L’Faro » by Fatine Khalkahl (Morocco).

As for the Central African feature films, Congo and Gabon are Cameroon’s only distinguished guests at this 27th edition of the Ecrans Noirs Festival. Of the 10 films in the brun, 3 are from the DRC including «  Injonctions » by Social Bangui, «         A Deux Reprises » by Christian Nzonga-Nkinzo and « Augure » by Baloji. Only Vincent Mbinzou’s « Koto & Kengué, les Descendants » will be the Gabonese film screening in Yaoundé in October. It should be noted that Gabon is a candidate  for the final crown, with a proven track record. It still holds the prize for the Best Screenplay at the 26th edition, won by Gabonese screenwriter Marcelle Nze Bitéghé in 2022.

The short films category is the springboard for foreign films. A total of 8 out of 13 foreign films will be competing Cameroonian shorts. Topping is Nigeria with «  The Broken Mask » by Kagho, « Ziwa » by Samuel T (Uganda), «  DearWard » by Marwa Ali El Sharkawy (Egypt), «  Timis » by Moctar Gueye (Senegal), «  Dans Le Noir » by Mor Talla Ndione (France), «  Nihi » by Sarah Alita (Cote D’ivoire), « Elisa » by Faycal Leonce Soura (Burkina Faso), and «  Célébration » by Blal Touil (Morocco).

The competition will run for a week in Cameroon. It will run from 14th  to 21st October 2023 in Yaoundé. Ecrans Noirs is an African film festival founded in 1997 by Director Bassek Ba Kobhio.

Delia She She

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