29 August 2018 - Long time IIFF supporters, The Swedish Embassy partnered with IIFF and the Conversations with Our Fathers platform to host a special screening of Zimbabwean short film MUKANYA at the B2C Nexus venue in the Central Business District in Harare.

MUKANYA, written by veteran novelist Ignatius Mabasa and directed by Siza Mukwedini, focuses on one man’s journey to redeem himself from a past marred by drunkenness and violence, by saving his son, who has become a reflection of his failures as a father.

Starring veteran actor Stephen Chigorimbo in the lead title role. The film was produced by the Conversations with Our Fathers project, a platform created by members of the Zimbabwe US Exchange Alumni. Founders of the platform include former IIFF director, Yvonne Jila, and veteran WFOZ member, Karen Mukwasi. Current WFoZ chairperson, Stella January also features in the film as Mukanya’s long-suffering wife.

A deep and insightful conversation led by film director Siza Mukwedini and Angelique Larsen from the Swedish Embassy was held after the screening. The conversation emphasized the need to engage men to create safe spaces for women and girls. Ms Larsen spoke at length about the effect of the economic meltdown on the safety of women in public and private spaces. The pressing need to change perspectives of fatherhood, as a way of dismantling patriarchy in the Zimbabwean context was also raised.

IIFF was applauded for providing platforms that make uncomfortable conversations comfortable. Long time IIFF audience members who attended the screening attested that IIFF always brings to light what society and power bearers fight hard to sweep under the carpet.

The screening was followed by a reception sponsored by the Swedish Embassy during which, after the tense nature of the issues discussed, the audience lightened up as the conversations became more relaxed and social.