Three films from Latin America, co-productions with Mexico, Brazil, and Haiti, won prizes at the 9th annual edition of the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA Awards) that took place last night in Nigeria.
The first ever Ghanian-Mexican co-production Kwaku Ananse (pictured) by Akosua Adoma Owusu was awarded the prize for Best Short Film. The film was produced by Julio Chavezmontez from Mexico's Piano production company, and Lisa Cortes (executive producer of the award-winning film Precious). Award-winner Mexican director Pedro González-Rubio (Alamar) served as DP, and it was co-edited by Mexican filmmaker Rodrigo Quintero. The film, that have been nominated for a Golden Bear at the last edition of the Berlinale, is a creative retelling of a West African fable about wisdom which draws upon the rich mythology of Ghana.
The Haitian-American co-production Stones in the Sun (pictured right) by Patricia Benoit was the winner of the prize for Best Diaspora Feature. In the midst of increasing political violence, the film tells the story of a young couple, two sisters, and a father and son who are driven from Haiti to New York, where they must confront the truths of their interlocked pasts.
The film Fan do Brasil, a Guadeloupe/Brasil co-production by Steve James won the prize for Best Diaspora Documentary. The film follows Rui Moreira, a famous Brazilian dancer, who is also the artistic Director of the FAN, Festival of Black Arts in Brazil. In a country where black people are still the victims of social injustice, this festival pays tribute to the contribution of Afro-Brazilians to the country’s cultural and economic development.
Additionally, Mozambican film Virgin Margarida directed by Brazilian filmmaker Licínio Azevedo was nominated for seven Africa Movie Academy Awards including Best Picture. The film won the prize for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. Azevedo was invited by filmmaker Ruy Guerra to join the National Institute of Cinema (INC) in Mozambique, where he lives since 1975.