Kenyan authorities ban new Rafiki movie

A movie about love between two women has been banned in Kenya, ahead of its premiere at international film festival Cannes.

Kenya’s Film and Classification Board (KFCB) said Thursday “Rafiki” was banned because of intent to “promote lesbianism,” in the country.
“The film has been restricted due to its homosexual theme and clear intent to promote lesbianism in Kenya contrary to the law,” a statement from the board said
It added that the film should not be distributed or shown anywhere in the country and anyone found with a copy would be in breach of the law.
Kenyan filmmaker Wanuri Kahiu, who directed the movie, took to Twitter to express her disappointment, saying,”We believe adult Kenyans are mature and discerning enough to watch local content but their right has been denied.
“Rafiki” is Kenya’s first LGBT-themed movie and makes history as the first Kenyan movie to premiere at Cannes, with its debut appearance next month.
Inspired by the 2007 Caine Prize winning short story “Jambula Tree” by Ugandan writer Monica Arac Nyeko, “Rafiki” which means ‘friend’ in Swahili is the story of friendship and tender love that grows between two young women amidst family and political pressures.

Why was “Rafiki” banned?

The board said “Rafiki” was banned because it had homosexual scenes and undertones which were not in the script originally submitted for approval.
It had called the director when the movie was finally submitted and asked for some homosexual scenes to be removed, however the director refused.
The KFCB said in the statement that foreign sponsors who intend to introduce and normalize homosexuality in Kenya through movies should desist from such acts.
“Kenya is a country with a culture, beliefs and shared values which must be respected,” it said.
“Hare-brained schemes by foreigners funding film producers in Kenya to promote homosexuality in the name of equality and inclusion will be exposed and strongly resisted.”
The ban has sparked quite a number of reactions on social media. The film’s supporters lashed out at the film board for “restricting” the movie.
“This idea of ‘we do this for the children’ has been used all across history to yank away rights from people. What happened to freedom of expression?” Brian Kelwon said on Twitter.
But some Kenyans have expressed support for the ban, saying the film board did the right thing to preserve the culture and traditional values of the country.
“If the movie’s content will promote and encourage our youth into homosexuality then it should be banned,” said Kennedy Onkoba.
KFCB has banned some movies in the past.
In 2014, it banned the Oscar-winning “Wolf of Wall Street” for extreme scenes of nudity, sex, alcohol, drug-taking and profanity.
It also forced Coca-Cola to scrap a kissing scene in an ad because it “violated family values.”

Comedy star Chris Rock allegedly cheated on his wife with Kerry Washington

Rumors have been swarming Chris Rock lately, ever since he revealed during a comedy routine that he cheated on his ex-wife, Malaak Compton-Rock, with three different women.

Following this publicized confession, sources have since come forward alleging that one of the women he allegedly cheated on his wife with is none other than Scandal star Kerry Washington.

The rumors began swirling following a new cover story with Rolling Stone, with the report quoting that Rock said in a routine, “I was a piece of s**t,” while describing his marriage to his ex-wife. The magazine also added that the comedian “segues into his infidelities and gets disarmingly specific, describing three women: one famous, one semifamous and one a member of the retail class.”

Following this report, a source confided to Page Six, to identify the “famous” woman, claiming it was Washington.

“He was cheating on his wife with Kerry when they were filming [I Think I Love My Wife] about him, ironically, having fantasies of cheating on his wife,” the source claimed. “That went on for a while, for like six months, and she found out. There’s no gray area.”
According to speculation surrounding the alleged affair, it began around 2007, when Washington was engaged to actor David Moscow, with Rock reigniting the rumor following his recent Rolling Stone cover.

Reps for both Rock and Washington have not yet commented on the alleged affair.



How passion has thrust Kasule Douglas Benda to film making heights

Kasule Douglas Benda is a new name to watch out for on the entertainment scene, especially the film industry. Capital FM’s Annah Nafula met Kasule for chat about work and the arts in Uganda.
He is of medium height, small bodied and a dark skinned 26 year old gentle man. The dreadlocks are not a sight you will miss too. On a lighter note, we kick off our conversation with a teaser of why this award winner has not shown up with his latest award. It turns out I am wrong, he checks his backpack and shows it off.

He subconsciously did his first directing at a school play. “During one Music Dance and Drama season in high school, I was among those who were just watching on while others were acting and dancing. I noticed a few things were amiss in my house’s play. I recall telling our house patron, Mr. Kirebwe, to fix them. My ideas were used and our play came second in the competition,” narrates Kasule.

That was the birth of my awareness; Kasule now knew the arts would be something he would be willing to pursue in the long run. At St. Peters Nsambya, he met Kiyiga Andrew who was a member of the Bakayimbira. He walked up to him and asked to joins him during holidays so as to polish his talent.
“In my senior four vacation, my parents allowed me to go spend time with the Bakayimbira, I wasn’t participating in any plays but I was just hanging out with these actors and learning everything I could. My mom always gave me transport though I wasn’t actively participating,” recalls Kasule.

Fast forward, he joined Makerere where he pursued a bachelor’s degree in Drama and Film. While studying there, he managed to get his first role in a TV drama series that was happening then on NTV, titled Tricksters. It was a nice opportunity for Kasule because it was his first paid job in the arts business. “I was paid fifty thousand on my first act. I was so excited and just couldn’t wait for the show to air,” Kasule recollects.

The Tricksters show was a kick start to Kasule’s acting career. After this big break, Kasule was invited to act in the proceeding show which was Katemba mu Kooti. The young man acted in several radio dramas like Rockpoint 256, Makomere, Oli steady among others. “At this point money was coming through and it was all good,” he says.

After school, it was a bit tough for the young actor. He badly wanted to focus on acting because all he envisioned himself was a famous and prominent actor. It was heart breaking when reality set in for Kasule as he could not get payable gigs in several months. I got desperate. I was thrown out of my house and had to go back home to my parents.

“I was scorned by neighbors who often told their children to study what was important. Not to be like me who had wasted my parent’s fees studying what wouldn’t pay off,” explains Kasule.
He adds, “Later on, I figured out a way and got back on my feet. Finding people who believe in my dream has played a big part in my career. Today, I have worked on quite a number of films, some of which have won awards and others have been nominated in different parts of the world. I also own a talents management company called Benda Bookings that has signed several actors and actresses.

I am at a part in my life where more than ever I am convinced that the Ugandan film industry is growing for the better.” Though not without trials, film makers are stepping out to the challenges and improving by the day. So are the actors and all the key players. I believe there is a bright future for Ugandan films.
Today, the severally nominated film maker delights in film and lives off it. “I am more proud of Ugandan films ,” asserts Kasule.

Lupita dazzles at the Queen of Katwe premier in $600,000 Worth of Jewels

The Queen has arrived!

Lupita Nyong’o hit the red carpet Saturday for the Toronto International Film Festival premiere of her latest film, Disney’s The Queen of Katwe.

Nyong’o, 33, wore a vibrant canary-and-cobalt strapless dress with intricate flora detailing on the bodice, and accessorized the formfitting look with a matching blue headdress.

But her biggest, most jaw-dropping fashion statement was her bling: The actress wore $624,000 worth of jewelry from Tiffany & Co., including an 8.21-carat yellow-diamond ring, a 15.75-carat sapphire-and-diamond ring, and tanzanite-and-diamond earrings.

The busy actress, who will also reprise her role as Maz Kanata in the next Star Wars movie, plays Harriet Mutesi, mother of a 12-year-old chess prodigy, Phiona Mutesi, from the slums of Uganda.





Another racist outburst brewing as white actor plays Micheal Jackson role in new movie

Fans of the Gloved One want the white actor cast to play Michael Jackson in a new British TV movie to “Beat It.”

“Because we aren’t whitewashed enough in Hollywood, apparently,” read a tweet posted on BET’s Twitter page on Wednesday.

“They seriously couldn’t find a black actor to play Michael Jackson?,” tweeted DeRay Mckesson, an American civil rights activist and leader in the “Black Lives Matter” movement.

Imani Gandy wrote, “They cast a white guy to play Michael Jackson. I think we can admit that this whole ‘planet earth’ thing isn’t working out.”

Despite being black, the King of Pop will be played by Joseph Fiennes, a British actor best known for his role in “Shakespeare in Love.” He is also the younger brother of Ralph Fiennes.

“Congratulations to noted African-American actor Joseph Fiennes on being cast as Michael Jackson,” tweeted Forbes film critic Scott Mendelson.

“Wait…Joseph Fiennes is playing Michael Jackson in a movie? You have got to be effin kidding me,” wrote Shaun Hutchinson.

User @tawnybananas added, “Whose on board with boycotting the whitewashing of Michael Jackson in a show where Joseph Fiennes has been [cast] to play him?”

Even Fiennes himself noted in an interview this week that he felt the role would be “a challenge” as he described the plot of the film, which is based on a 2011 Vanity Fair report in which Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando allegedly went on a road trip from New York to Ohio in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

“I got the script the other day,” he told WENN. “It’s a comedy. It doesn’t poke mean fun but it’s a story, possibly urban legend … It’s a lovely thing about Michael’s relationship with Liz Taylor and Marlon Brando. It’s a fun, light-hearted tongue-in-cheek road trip of what celebrity of that kind is like. But also it’s rather beautiful and poignant about their relationships as well.”

The movie, which is being made by Sky Arts, has already been filmed and also stars Stockard Channing as Taylor and Brian Cox as Brando. Screenwriter Neil Forsyth tweeted Wednesday that the film is set to be released in the UK “soon.”



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Chris Rock cuts the all white Oscar’s tension with reasons why we should watch

Comedian Chris Rock has chosen to make a lemonade out of the all white Oscars Lemon.

Last week there was an internet hullabaloo on why no blacks were nominated for the Oscars and while some are being furious others are making a whole lot of fun out of it.

Comedian Chris Rock who last year featured in a popular American television drama, Empire will be hosting this year’s Oscars. He shared a video on his twitter about why it was important for everybody to watch the  watch the Oscars.

The Video captioned,

The #Oscars. The White BET Awards.

And he stated the as:

1.Presenter cleavage

2. Check out who dies this year

3. I might curse reported that

During an interview with Wendy Williams, the Ride Along 2 star said he’s not upset at the snub. “It’s the Oscars, they do what they do. The people love the movie and the people supported the movie.” He later continued, “It is nice to be recognized, but N.W.A is anti-establishment so we’re used to people trying to dismiss what we gotta say, used to the industry looking down on us. We were the black sheeps of the industry and we used to it. If we didn’t get nominated, that would be familiar territory.”

May be the blacks know how to handle it? May be.

The 88th Oscars will take place at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California at 5:30 p.m.