Saturday, 17 March 2018

Celebrating, Promoting and Consuming our Own: Meet Cameroonian Multiple Award Winning Film Maker and Actor - Nkanya Nkwai

Nkanya Nkwai  is a Cameroonian film maker and actor  from the North West Region.
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Nkanya Nkwai in Lithuania

He made his debut on the big screen in 2008 with Seaside movies Limbe, in a lead role in the  movie 'Becky Diana', and a supporting role in 'Walking Stick'.

Nkanya Nkwai took a break from the scene in that same 2008, and made a tremendous official  comeback  to the Cameroon Film Industry in 2012, with the blockbuster 'The African Guest', his maiden project, as a producer, with shootings in Colorado in the US and Cameroon.
From that 2012 till now(March 2018), Nkanya  has produced  five movies, directed seven and featured in more than fifteen different movies.

He is one of Cameroon's most decorated actor both on the national and international front. 

In 2014, he won Best Actor at the Ecrans Noirs Film Festival for his performance in the movie 'The African Guest' and another nomination for Best Actor at the Cameroon Music Movie Award CMMA. 
In the 2015 edition of the Ecrans Noirs Film Festival his movie 'Nightfall' featuring Cameroonian A-list actor Epulle Jeffrey, Nigerian Clem OhamezeNkanya Nkwai himself and a host of other top actors, was awarded the prize for Best Film

Still in 2015, at the RATU International Film Festival in Douala, 'Nightfall'  took home the prize for Best Film

At the Festivale Pan Africaine or Pan African Film Festival in 2016, one of the movies he took part in as a Second Unit Director in Cameroon, Ben and Ara starring Cameroon born Nollywood actress Constance Ejuma was at the top of the charts. 


The movie again won Best Foreign Film Award at the 20th edition of the prestigious Festival Ecrans Noirs in Cameroon in 2016.






















The movie won best film at the festival and was again recognized in 2016 as Best Film in the maiden edition of the Cameroon International Film Festival

His self written and produced movie 'Life Point' also won the Award for Best Film at Ecrans Noirs 2017, and also won the Award for the Best Actor in Supporting role at CAFAA 2017 .

According to the multiple Award winning actor, 'Curiosity, need and lack' motivated him to join the cinema world.


The movies he has directed includes the upcoming noise making movie 'A Good Time To Divorce', 'Breach of Trust' produced by Rosaline Fonkwa, 'E'do and Punch' produced by Ruth Nkweti, Constance Ejuma's multiple Award winning movie 'Ben & Ara' as 2nd Unit Director, 'Double Life' and 'Broken Pieces'.
Nkanya Nkwai's  five produced movies are: 'The African Guest', 'Viri', 'Nightfall', 'Life Point' and 'A Good Tine To Divorce'.
      

On a personal palmares, Nkanya Nkwai wrote and produced the movie 'LifePoint', which took Cameroon to Africa's Biggest Film Festival FESPACO in 2017, after fifteen years of absence. The same movie had an honorary screening at the Cinéma et Migration festival in Agadir Morroco where Cameroon was invitation as a guest of honor.
Talking about his good and bad times in the industry that is facing stiff competition, Nkanya said: ' I mostly focus on the good or maybe not, I just focus on working, networking, and trying to improve on my craft". 'Bad times is the negative competition among filmmakers and the double standards or favouritism some media persons practice."

In an industry where everyone wants to emulate the steps of those making it calling them Role models Nkanya Nkwai on the other hand says he does not believe in role model. In his own words he said: 'I don't believe in role model, at least not anymore. I respect everyone, what they do but I just try to do my stuff with assistance from trusted colleagues'.

Also in a growing industry, where everyone has a space to create his/her own world, envy and jealousy seem to be the order of the day, with actors at each other's throat, over minor issues that do not need to raise dust, and Nkanya Nkwai who is in his mid thirties draws a big picture to his colleagues, on how even a million of them can comfortably fit into that picture frame, without anyone inconveniencing or embarrassing and harassing the other. "Envy and jealousy won't take us to that place we want to be. No one is really ahead of no one, so we should not be trying to pull others down. On the contrary there is room for everyone".
Nkanya Nkwai and his team for the movie 'A Good Time To Divorce' will be Oklahoma on Saturday March 24, Dallas on Friday April 6, and Maryland on Friday April 13 2018, for the Premieres of the Movie.


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