The 2017 GUBA Awards’ Animator of the Year Nominees

The Ghana UK Based Achievement (GUBA) awards have rolled around and we’re excited about the freshly baked Animator of the Year category. This inclusion gives us hope of good times ahead for Ghanaian animation as more people and institutions recognise this art form’s brilliant potential. Below are the nominees in the category. While you’re at it, kindly check out our thoughts on the awards hereContinue reading “The 2017 GUBA Awards’ Animator of the Year Nominees”

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GUBA Awards 2017: Another Step for Ghanaian Animation

The mantra for a while has been to change the future of African movies through storytelling and an excellent medium to do this is through animation. An even better way to encourage stories in this beautiful medium is to reward creators for their hard work and consequently, promote them to a wider audience. That’s exactly what the Ghana UK Based Achievement (GUBA) award scheme is about to do and it wins them a special place in our hearts.  Continue reading “GUBA Awards 2017: Another Step for Ghanaian Animation”

8th Classics In The Park: An Afromation Experience

Classics In The Park is an informal approach to the cinema that most people don’t get to experience. Forget the air-conditioned and sound-proof theatre halls. Instead, embrace a more relaxed, picnic-like setting, ripe with funky African sounds and most importantly, classic African films. This a sweet escape into the realm of classic films that still resonate pure artistry and fluid storytelling by African cinema legends such as Kwaw Ansah, Ousmane Sembene and more. This laudable initiative is spearheaded by the good people at Africa Film Society. Continue reading “8th Classics In The Park: An Afromation Experience”

The Way Forward: Comics and Smoothies post-Event Review

Comics and Smoothies is over, unfortunately! The much anticipated informal gathering as Vortex Comics’ Somto Ajuluchukwu put it proved to a success. There was quite the turnout. The turnout was, in fact, bigger than expected.

This gathering aimed to bring to the fore the various challenges facing the (African comics, games and animation) industry movement – we aren’t quite an industry yet – and to effectively find solutions. Continue reading “The Way Forward: Comics and Smoothies post-Event Review”

Celebrating Ghanaian Animation: the Golden Movie Awards

We’re crazy excited to announce that the animated films of COMFORT ARTHUR and FRANCIS Y. BROWN have been nominated in the Golden Animation category of the Golden Movie Awards.

In its second year, the award will for the first time, highlight Ghanaian animation talent. The nominated films are Brown’s school project, Agorkoli: Cause of Hogbetsotso, a retelling of the history of the Ewe people and Comfort’s films, the Peculiar Life of a Spider, a dark comedy abut how Kwaku Anansi tackles issues such as depression and identity crisis and Imaging.

As “an annual award that seeks to honor outstanding achievement in the African television, digital media and film industries”, I can’t help but wonder why only two films have been nominated. A number of films have been produced within the year of review (January 1st to December 31st) across the continent that could have been nominated. It makes absolute sense if it was a Ghanaian award scheme but it is not and thus needs to be more inclusive. Projects such as Yellow Fever for example are an unfortunate, inexcusable exemption on everyone’s part. Perhaps like me, creators heard very little about the award, or didn’t think too much of it (it is but an infant after all) to submit their projects.

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Poking around their website moreover, I can’t help but conclude the animation category was an afterthought. Besides the 2016 nominees page, no mention is made of the category, not even on the category definitions page.

The Grand Jury controls the nature of awards and nominations, so perhaps this was their best decision. However, with a mission that reads, “to change the narrative of Africa by awarding excellence in Africa through film”, I’m surprised animation isn’t highly regarded. I do hope the potential for animation, which transcends demographics and allows for creative expression in ways traditional film won’t, seizes their minds.

I give them the benefit of the doubt but moving forward, if they truly are about changing the African narrative, they should have animated series like Bino and Fino, Ubongo Kids, Tales of Nazir, Mdu Comics among others on their radar as well.

Regardless, it’s a step in the needed direction and we wish Comfort and Francis the best. A win for either is a win for us all.

Peep their film trailers below.

Squirt Creativity.

[Agorkoli: Cause of Hogbetsotso]

[The Peculiar Life of A Spider]

By Kadi Yao Tay [aka The Golden Afromation Consumer]

Update October 28, 2016. The Golden Movie Awards has reinforced my belief that the animation category was simply an afterthought. Comfort Arthur, winner of the category is absent from the winners list on the award’s website.  An archived version of the site for confirmation can be found here.