Sh310,000 up for grabs in African film making competition


Three African film creatives stand a chance to walk away with a seed funding of $2,500 (about Sh310,000) from NATIV Shorts Africa creative competition.

Photo credit: Shutterstock

Three African film creatives stand a chance to walk away with a seed funding of $2,500 (about Sh310,000) from NATIV Shorts Africa creative competition.

NATIV, an online crew and creative platform has launched its first competition, which is open to visual storytellers in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, Nigeria and Gambia.

The competition, which is offering a chance to creatives to win up to Sh310,000 in prizes and gain mentorship with African and global media industry executives, is calling on people experienced in creating documentary, promo, TV commercial, branded or YouTube content, or have worked with international clients, to apply.

NATIV Shorts will officially open on January 24 at 6pm when creatives will enter the first stage, which is sending applications to take part in the competition. The deadline for the initial stage is set for February 15, 2023 at 6pm.

For the initial stage, creatives will need to sign up on the NATIV website and then submit a one minute film.

“For this stage, they will be asked to submit a simple short 30-second introduction video about their visual storytelling as a creative living and working in Africa. They can submit samples of previous work. This free-to-enter competition is to show the world what it means to be an African creative today,” Margaret Kamau, a production assistant at NATIV, told Nation.Africa.

From the entries, the jury, which comprises NATIV mentors and advisors, will select 12 visual storytellers, two from each country, to compete for the ultimate prize money and mentorship programme.

“Once the submissions are made, we will take about six weeks to review all the submissions then the jury will shortlist the 12 participants, two from each country, who’ll then be asked to produce a 60-second clip and five photos and then compete amongst each other for the ultimate grand prizes and funding to use as they wish,” Ms Kamau added.

During the production, advisors from the UK, Uganda, USA, Nigeria, Netherlands, and Kenya will mentor the 12 providing them with training and networking opportunities.

The 12 selected creatives will also benefit from one-on-one mentorship with top media industry executives as well as have the opportunity to attend an exclusive masterclass with BBC London and Jane Mote, the Pocket Stories Founder.

“The $2500 prize fund will be split among three winners who will be selected by the jury and votes from social media. One winner will gain an internship opportunity with a media agency/organisation partner in Europe. Another winner will get the opportunity to shoot scenes and gain experience on the set of an upcoming TV Drama for a DSTV Channel focusing on East African TV Content,” Ms Kamau added.

To be eligible to apply for the competition, individuals must have a good eye for strong narratives and images, using visuals and sound to tell the story; be a citizen and permanent resident of one of the six countries listed; hold an African nationality with a valid passport; and have their own equipment.

They are also required to have a track record as a content creator in documentaries and short promos. This means that competitors will be required to have released at least one production either internationally or locally. This can also be a short film, documentary, promo, TV commercial, branded content or YouTube content.

NATIV was founded in 2021 by Ex BBC & HBO Ugandan-British filmmaker Caroline Kamya when she returned to her birthplace, Uganda. Here, she set up the global online freelance and production platform for the best African Crew and aligned creatives.

“My vision is to fill the gap between international clients that want to work with African crew and aligned creatives instead of flying their teams over. They save money and time as the talent will be well vetted and curated to make sure they are the top of the pool and have some experience working internationally.]

“Secondly, my vision also supports the longer-term skills development of African creatives via online and in-person workshops and seminars led by international and African Diaspora talent with experience working in Hollywood, Nollywood and the British media, further developing the next level of creatives that can join the platform,” Ms Kamya says.