Kenya Film Commission will award a total of Ksh 3 Million prize money to the winners of the 10th edition of Kalasha International Film and TV Awards. Each category winner will receive Ksh 100,000 prize money in addition to the Kalasha trophy; an increase from the Ksh 50,000 last year.
Kalasha Awards is an annual event that recognizes and celebrates exceptional talent in the film and TV industry in Kenya
In his speech at the Gala held at Sarit Centre, Westlands, Mr. Joe Mucheru, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs said that his Ministry has undertaken a number of progressive initiatives such as the operationalization of the Film Incentive Package that offers relief to film producers who are keen to shoot in Kenyan locations. This is aimed at increasing foreign revenue in the Kenyan economy.
On her part, Ms. Esther Koimett, Principal Secretary, State Department of Broadcasting and Telecommunications in the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs noted that the Ministry is developing a National Film Policy that will provide a supportive regulatory framework for film business. Additionally, with the Data Network Centre at Konza Techno City nearing completion, filmmakers will have the opportunity to explore VODs and other streaming platforms as alternative distribution channels.
“The film industry has a Return on Investment ratio of 1:6 for Government investment, making it an attractive and lucrative sector. I therefore call upon more investors and key stakeholders to venture fully into the film industry,” she added.
Speaking at the same event, Mr. Timothy Owase, CEO, Kenya Film Commission reported that a total of 1036 submissions were received comprising several categories, with 19 categories up for public voting (Public voting constitutes 30% while the Jury vote constitutes 70% of the total vote).
The other 11 categories were exclusive to the Jury’s decision due to their technicality. “It is important to emphasize that the quality of the submissions had improved and the use of modern technology was encouraging as we mark a decade of documenting quality African stories,” the CEO added.
A nine-member Jury academy drawn from the film industry was tasked to review the submitted film and TV projects and shortlist the nominees. The Jury comprised of: Mr. James Kanja (Kalasha Jury Chair | Producers Guild), Mr. Fred Makori (Kenya National Film Association), Ms. Jackline Emali (Kenya Scriptwriters Guild), Mr. Simon Mwaura (Riverwood Ensemble), Mr. Mishael Mose (Association of Film Producing Educational Institutions in Kenya), Ms. Joy Alunga (Association of Animation Artists of Kenya), Mr. Alfred Munyua (Kenya Actors Guild), Mr. Joe Kageni (Kenya Film and Television Professionals Association) and Ms. Loise Makato (Media Council of Kenya).
The unveiling of the nominees set the stage for public voting which started on Thursday, 19th November 2020 and closed on 3rd December 2020 leading up to the Awards. For the second year running, the Commission partnered with StarTimes Media Kenya Limited whose mobile App –StarTimes ON – was the official Kalasha Awards platform where the nominated films were uploaded for viewing and voting.
As one of the Awards’ sponsors, StarTimes Media Kenya Limited awarded 26 of the winners with StarTimes gift hampers (StarTimes set top box and Smart Bracelet) and 4 winners with TV sets (43 inch Full HD Smart TV). The TV sets will be awarded to the Best Lead Actor in a Film, Best Lead Actress in a Film, Best Supporting Actor in a Film and Best Supporting Actress in a Film.
He noted that Kenya Film Commission has successfully launched the Film Empowerment Programme – an initiative that offers to fund for Kenyan content with the aim of promoting increase in quantity and quality of Kenyan productions. “Through the recent re-introduction of the Drive-In cinemas, the Commission now offers content producers an innovative way of content consumption as well as an alternative distribution system,” the CS noted.