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Kenyan short film on Mandera bus attack nominated for Oscar Awards

By HILARY KIMUYU January 24th, 2018 2 min read

A Kenyan film, based on the Mandera bus attack of December 21, 2015 has been nominated for Best Live Action short film at the 90th Oscar awards.

The announcement was made on Tuesday afternoon just hours before the Nairobi premier of Watu Wote (All of Us), a film by a German student, which has been nominated for the prestigious awards slated for March 4.

The film inspired by the terrorist attack – in which two people were killed and several others injured – has been nominated by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to compete with five other live action short films.

The film has won over 35 film festival awards, including the Gold Student Academy Award.

The film Watu Wote is inspired by a terrorist attack on a Mandera-bound bus in December 2015. PHOTO | COURTESY
The film Watu Wote is inspired by a terrorist attack on a Mandera-bound bus in December 2015. PHOTO | COURTESY


The film centers on the conflicts of the Muslims and Christians in Kenya who have been targeted by the brutal terrorist attacks of the Al-Shaaab. The incessant anxiety created around this conflict continues until one day in 2015, passengers on a bus prove that faith and solidarity can prevail acts of terror and violence.

The religious divide is bridged when two religious groups come together and defy the odds by fighting a common enemy with Muslims shielding Christians from the attackers by offering them their Islamic attire to disguise themselves.

Loice Anyango, the only Christian lady on board on the fateful day, was given Islamic clothing by Muslim ladies to disguise herself as a Muslim.


Short Kenyan film wins first Oscar – VIDEO

A primary school teacher who was injured during the attack while fighting for the Christians succumbed to bullet injuries while undergoing treatment in Nairobi.

Led by production manager Tobias Rosen, the film makers intended to show the world that terrorism is not about religion but about a few individuals with ill motives.

The film was produced by Tobias Rosen of Hamburg Media School and Bramwel Iro and Matrid Nyagah of LightBox Africa and directed by Katja Benrath.

Produced in 2016 as the graduation film for the Hamburg Media School master class program, the film was nominated for and won the Student Oscars.