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Kenyan film on post-partum depression triumphs with awards and screenings

The short film Act Of Love has garnered an impressive 15 festival selections, 9 nominations, and 5 awards within just 13 weeks since its premiere.

The latest accolades include Best Short Film and Best Scriptwriter at the inaugural Mombasa International Film Festival.

To celebrate this achievement, the cast and crew are set to host a free screening at The Alchemist in Westlands on Tuesday, January 30, 2024, from 8pm to 10pm.

In collaboration with MyMovies.Africa™, the event aims to bring the impactful narrative to a wider audience.

With only 100 seats available, interested individuals can register for the screening here.

Act Of Love is inspired by a true story, that unfolds in Nairobi, focusing on the life of Juliana (Mwixx Mutinda), a young mother grappling with the challenges of motherhood amidst the quest for a livelihood. The film explores the harsh realities faced by women, shedding light on the prevalence of Post-Partum Depression (PPD) in Africa.

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Ms Shelly Gitonga, the award-winning scriptwriter, remarks, “Act Of Love is a film that makes society acknowledge the ugly side of Motherhood.”

She highlights the alarming statistics surrounding PPD, affecting 10-20% of women globally and an even more severe 10-32% in Africa.

The film has not only resonated with audiences but has also received critical acclaim and recognition at various international film festivals.

Previously, Act Of Love secured the Best Short Film award at the 9th Mashariki African Film Festival in Kigali, Rwanda, and the People’s Choice Award at the inaugural Sauti Zetu Film Festival in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.

Ms Shirleen Wangari, the award-winning producer at Blackwell Films, underlines the significance of addressing maternal mental health challenges. With a reported prevalence of 11-13% in Kenya, PPD can severely impact the well-being of mothers, newborns, families, and communities.

The film’s success extends beyond the festival circuit, with selections at prestigious events like the Zanzibar International Film Festival, Swahili International Film Festival & Awards, Fragments Festival in the UK, and the Hollywood African Cinema Connection (HACC) Film Festival in America, among others.

Ms Trushna Buddhdev-Patel, Co-Founder, CEO & Content Director of YAKWETU™ – the distributor, expresses pride in the cast and crew. In addition to being available on MyMovies.Africa™, the film is open for licensing to various platforms to reach a broader African and Diasporan audience.

Ms Chloe Genga, Impact Producer at LightBox Africa, invites collaboration with partners who share their vision for raising awareness about Post-Partum Depression, maternal health, and mental health.

The film is produced by Blackwell Films in collaboration with Ripple Productions and funded by Some Fine Day Pix, GIZ, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation & Development of Germany, and DocuBox East Africa Fund.