THE SAMARITANS- A COMEDY TV DRAMA ABOUT AN NGO THAT DOES NOTHING
12th March 2014 saw the premier of one of the most hilarious Kenyan series I have had the pleasure of watching. The Samaritans , a mockumentary stylesx new comedy TV show revolving around a Kenyan NGO (Non-Governmental organization) field office calling themselves Aid for Aid with its headquarters based in UK, that literally does nothing! Well, apart from the jibber jabber, the hilarious banter and the sexual indiscretion that you might find in your everyday NGO, right? If your NGO has moral upright people working in it, then this is not your normal everyday NGO.
Liam Acton and Alison Kariuki
Two episodes were aired in the open tranquil serene environment that Zen Garden has to offer as the invited guests and audience had a chance to meet the cast and crew of this series.
“Nairobi has a large development community, and I realized it's never actually been talked about in the context of comedy. I thought it would be good to bring the two worlds together," says the producer Hussein Kurji who runs the production company Xeinium Productions (www.xenium.com)
“I am an actor’s director. I managed to make the actors forget everything they know about acting and that is how I managed to get the good performances that the actors displayed” retorted the director Salim Keshavjee.
With a multiracial talented cast with names like Sarah Hassan, Liam Acton,Alison Kariuki Nyawira, Vered Ehsani Morad Sadat, Fridah Muhindi, Tania Akbarali, Susan Wong, Maina Ndungu, Harriet Ndegwa and many others, the Samaritans is breaking the boundaries of what we are used to seeing on our local channels.
The story starts when the new clueless country director Scott (played by Liam Acton) who has been transferred to the Kenyan Aid for Aid branch office to oversee matters. He is however met with hostility from the interim Country Director (played by Alison Kariuki) who feels she knows better than the head office. Together they have to get over their differences and meet the companies objectives else funding will stop trickling in from the head office.
Speaking of funding, the series has currently stalled due to lack of funding (the story and nightmare of every producer) as it is an independent production. Audiences will therefore have to wait before getting to watch the series until a TV station is able to pick it up and help with the production. You can however watch the 1st two episodes on AidForAid.org
Below is the official trailer of the series:
The screening of the Samaritans at Zen Garden was organized by Moonlight Cinema, a new open screen cinema company that is eager to support the Kenyan film industry and its producers to showcase their work. With Kenyan cinemas having closed at a fast rate, the Kenyan mass don’t have the chance to watch most of the local movies and moonlight Cinema is ready to change that a screen at a time and an outdoor theater experience.
Below are some of the pictures of the cast:
Elizabeth - Played by Fridah Muhindi
Carolina - Played by Susan Wong
Alisa (Idris) Badam Played by Tania Akbarali