African Interactive: the Moving Image

Our birds-of-a-feather discussion on African Interactive: the Moving Image took place at the Pervasive Media Studio last night, part of the Encounters international short film festival, in association with Afrika eye.

Photo by Jon Craig for Encounters

It was great to see so many new faces, and the discussion was all that we I could have hoped for at African Interactive: lots of interest in African film (digital & otherwise), and ideas about where it is now and how to bring out its full potential. We’ve listed some of the topics that came up, below

We’re going to post soon about where to continue the discussion online. But mainly we’re keen for people to be involved beyond discussion to help make projects happen, and we look forward to hearing from you about that. The next step is the African Interactive panel at on 9th November, between Bristol and Nairobi (and possibly another centre in Africa). Then there are all the things we can do beyond that to further the interests of African film and create UK-African collaborations. See for some personal thoughts about the principles behind that.

African Interactive & Afrika eye



African Interactive: the Moving Image
Topics discussed in no particular order. Just bullet points for now; we’ll be writing up our thoughts a little further down the line.

  • African film in Africa, African film in the UK
  • Case studies, including Kenya, Ghana and S. Africa
  • Nollywood, Jitu vs Hollywood
    • quality issues and differing appetites
    • some strong stories
    • the need for an economic base
    • Plenty of gems from these and other African countries
  • Histories of film-making in African countries
  • Digital technologies for filming, distribution and exhibition
    • Carrying films on our phones, distributing them via our phones
    • Transcending infrastructure issues such as power — Africa’s mobile industry has already done that
    • Plugging phones into screens to share
    • Plugging “pico-projectors” into phones to share
  • Viewing spaces and situations – mobiles, matatus, pop-up cinemas, booths …
  • Funding: for what? For which types of film? For whose films?
  • Content
    • African Pulp? African detective stories?
    • “Worthy” vs Pulp (say)
  • Marketing African film to Africa and abroad
  • Curation and cultivation (of films, of taste)
  • Journalism and democracy
  • Short film important, not a replacement for longer forms
  • Logistics of education