Africa Rising International Film Festival launched showcase series with a screening of Akin Omotoso’s The Ghost and the House of Truth
Africa Rising International Film Festival (ARIFF) launched its ARIFF Showcase at The Bioscope in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday.
This is the first in a series of planned showcases, set to take place periodically throughout the year in the lead-up to the main festival event, annually.
The themed showcases primarily aim is to provide a platform for African filmmakers who often struggle to access exhibition platforms at home and abroad. Moreover, ARIFF has a desire to use African storytelling as a vehicle for advancing urgent social conversations.
The Ghost and the House of Truth, directed by Nigerian-born award-winning writer and actor Akin Omotoso, explores one such theme: human trafficking. The film follows the character of Bola Ogun (played by Susan Wokoma), a single mother and dedicated counsellor who brokers reconciliation sessions between convicts and their victims. When her 10-year-old daughter Nike (Imoleayo Olusanya) goes missing after school, however, Bola finds herself in the role of vigilante.
“There are many compelling stories and masterpieces in the African film industry that are hardly ever exhibited. At ARIFF we feel it is important to rally around these films and provide the creative talent behind them a platform to connect with the audiences they are intended for,” says festival director, Ayanda Sithebe.
“The subject matter in African films is pertinent not only to the continent’s ’s film industry but to the global film industry as well,” he continues, adding that the plan is for these showcases to travel around the continent and beyond.
The fourth edition of the main ARIFF festival will run from 25-29 of November 2021 and will continue the tone set by the showcases with screenings that amplify African voices.
“This is our way of continuing to build a powerful, accessible, diverse network of pan-African storytellers who are not afraid to probe issues relating to sectors of our society that are often overlooked. This includes systematically disadvantaged people including the LGBTQI+ community and women,” adds Lala Tuku, festival co-chair.
The full upcoming screenings details including how the public can attend will be shared through the festival’s social media platforms.
The Africa Rising International Film Festival is an annual premier film festival produced by the young people and leading women in the industry. It is chaired by Lala Tuku with Actor Spaces founder Ayanda Sithebe who serves as the Festival director. At the heart of the festival is the exhibition of African Cinema and programmes curated for transformation to thrive.