Kenya has submitted Ravneet Chadha’s Subira for consideration in the international feature Oscar category.
The Nairobi-based, Indian-born filmmaker’s story makes a strong feminist statement in a movie about a young woman who challenges gender stereotypes and tradition. The pic is a Kenya-Denmark co-production, produced by Kaaya Films and Muasya Media Enterprises.
Subira (translated to mean patience) is based on an award-winning 2007 short of the same name. Brenda Wairimu stars as the free-spirited titular character, who struggles to live out her dream of swimming in the ocean, against local customs and an arranged marriage. The film addresses thoroughly modern African social issues.
Shot in English and local language Swahili, Subira is a coming-of-age story that addresses the universal issue of taking control of your life, regardless of the challenges society and culture bring.
Kenya has submitted four films for Oscar consideration since 2012, but has yet to receive a nomination.
In 2014, Kenya’s Lupita Nyong’o became the first Kenyan to win an Oscar for her performance in the movie 12 Years a Slave
At the end of her acceptance speech, Nyong’o left the audience with a message: “When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every child, no matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid.”
The 92nd Academy Awards are set to take place Feb. 9, 2020.