London: An African movie based on the journey of 5 children to watch the Football world cup 2010 is tipped to match the success of ‘Slumdog Millionaire’.
In the recent flurry of mainstream films set in Africa such as Blood Diamond, The Last King of Scotland and Shooting Dogs, all the white protagonists heroically engage themselves with dangerous and savage continent.
Later this month, five young, unknown Africans will walk up the red carpet in London’s Leicester Square to the British premiere of a film, ‘Africa United’ which discards the usual Hollywood stereotypes about the wild continent.
It has already been compared favourably to Slumdog Millionaire, and indeed, is being distributed by Pathe, the company behind Danny Boyle``s Oscar winner.
The early screenings have seen rapturous acclaim for the performances, and at the Toronto Film Festival last month it won a standing ovation.
"That was an insane moment and a big relief. There’s a whole side to Africa that is just not being seen. There are so many good stories and so many great people, entrepreneurial, clever, and joyful. There is so much ingenuity and creativity, it’s outrageous," the Guardian quoted director Debs Gardner-Paterson as saying.
"My cousin, who is 14, read the script and said ``You’ve got it wrong, this kid has a mobile phone, you don’t get that in Africa``, and I was like, yes you do, and that’s the point. There’s a whole side of Africa that you just don’t see,” he added.
"I go to film festivals and people say, ``Here comes the genocide guy,`` because my work has focused so much on that (civil war) period, but now it is time to show different stories from Africa. Let’s not brush over the issues but let’s not ignore the hope. This film is a transit point for people to start looking differently, through the eyes of children, at Africa. The football is just a metaphor, but I hope it will unleash many more stories from the continent," the director concluded with the hope of revolutionising people’s belief of Africa.