KAMPALA – May 18, 2022 – The 9th edition of the Uganda Film Festival (UFF 2022) officially kicked off on Wednesday night with the unveiling of nominees in various categories.
The red-carpet event, which was held at the UCC House in Bugolobi, attracted who-is-who in the Ugandan film industry and was spiced up by entertainment from Myko Ouma and Friends band.
Welcoming the 200 or so guests to UCC, Ag. Executive Director Irene Kaggwa Sewankambo expressed delight that the Ugandan film industry was experiencing exponential growth in respect to quality, quantity, and human capital development.
“We are happy to note and proudly announce that local independent productions are competing favourably and winning awards in various international festivals, and our local talent is gaining international recognition,” she said.
The Executive Director added that this was testimony that the hard work put in by stakeholders in the film industry was beginning to bear fruit.
Outlining the initiatives that UCC has taken to boost the film industry, including UFF, the Content Development Support Programme, local content quotas and capacity-building and training, Ms. Sewankambo thanked all stakeholders for their support.
“Through these initiatives, the Commission has been able to strategically stimulate growth, enhance creativity, innovation, productivity, competitiveness, and attract investment in the local audio-visual industry,” she said.
This year, the Executive Director revealed, the Commission has joined hands with various strategic partners to make the Uganda Film Festival “bigger, better, and greater,” especially as the creative sector recovers from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The partners supporting UFF 2022 include, Multichoice, Lyca Mobile, MTN, Airtel, Star Times, UBC, NBS, BBS, See TV, Uganda Tourism Board and Century Cinema. This year the festival received 282 submissions:
- 104 local feature films
- 71 short films
- 23 animations
- 22 student films
- 21 TV drama series
- 16 documentaries
- 15 international Films and
- 10 East African films
These submissions will be subjected to scrutiny by a jury of experts who will select winners to be announced during a gala on June 3, 2022. The jury comprises the following experts:
- Njoki Muhoho – Chief Jury (Kenya)
- Ana Belen Asfura Fuentes (Canada)
- Oluwagbemiga Ben-Daniel (USA)
- Dr. Dorothy Atuhura (Uganda)
- Dr. Cindy Magara (Uganda)
- Matthew Bishanga (Uganda)
- Philip Luswata (Uganda)
- James Okoit Owaraga (Uganda)
As part of the UFF 2022 capacity building initiatives, UCC has partnered with CineArts Academy in the United States to offer certification courses to 726 Ugandans in 15 different fields. The Commission has also partnered with Century Cinema to screen all films that have been nominated and those recommended by the Jury from Friday, May 20 to June 02, 2022.
In her remarks, the Executive Director urged film lovers to come out in big numbers, with their friends and relatives, to watch Uganda’s own productions during this period. She thanked all filmmakers who submitted films to the festival and congratulated those whose films had been nominated to compete in the various categories.