KENYAN FILM NEOPHOBIA TO SCREEN AT THE 70TH CANNES FILM FESTIVAL 2017
Neophobia is the only African (Kenyan) film showing at the 70th Cannes film festival this year, one of the most prestigious festivals in the world. It will be screening from the 24th to 26th May 2017. The film was selected by the festival’s Short film corner panel and Creative Minds Group.The 17mins short film by Mark Maina, tells the story of a young African woman obsessed with old routine and an unwillingness to try new things. When she unexpectedly finds an appreciation for a modern day object, she is forced to completely rethink –and overthink –her life.
Living in a place where the ratio of women to men is considerably high, writer and director Mark Maina met and conversed with a lot of young women who have had varying degrees of characteristics.
Mark elaborates "Some women may wonder why it seems men hardly woo them. Even if men woo them, their relationship with such men may lead to nowhere because they possess certain distasteful characteristics which are some of the major reasons they are still single. The easiest way to cure a sickness is to know its cause. Without knowing why some men are disinterested in a lady might make her beat about the bush. She may continue to cry inwardly which will not help her situation. The only thing she should ponder upon is to know what is wrong with her and then find the right solution to it. A woman attracts men not just because of her beauty or intelligence or wealth. A woman attracts men mainly because of her good characters. On the other hand, a woman may be detested by men if she has certain old unfavorable attributes."
Mark Maina, saw Neophobia as an opportunity to show that Kenyan filmmakers ought to expand their genre benchmarks, though he was concerned the film mostly targets "a modern audience"
Kenyan actress Joyce Maina who plays the main character was interested in the director, Mark Maina having seen his short film Home, which she describes as “brilliant”. Working with Mark she says, “Was really amazing”. I haven’t had an experience that’s been this fulfilling in all areas. His direction is so clear, and he has a really sensitive way of dealing with actors and getting the best out of us.”
Brian Ogola also stars in the film as Dr. Adam Akunga. Brian has been the lead in the celebrated Jane and Abel alongside Liz Njagah as well as tackled roles in Lies that Bind and Love 101. An alumni of the Hollywood Acting by esteemed D. David Morin, Brian has always been a powerfully charismatic onscreen presence and working on this short film emphasizes how good a talent he is.
Total Film budget: KSH 150,000
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