Salt Lake City–The director of the film, “Supa Moda: Heroes Live Forever,” visited with City Academy students, parents and teachers on March 6. Likarion Wainaina was in Salt Lake City in conjunction with the Utah Film Center’s 2019 Tumbleweeds Film Festival for Children and Youth.
City Academy students were treated to advance screening of Wainaina’s film prior to his visit. The film was also shown at the Tumbleweeds festival. “I laughed out loud, I cried. This was just a really good film,” said one student as her friend nodded in agreement. City Academy English teacher, Hana Jabr, noted that she was very touched by this film and appreciative of the opportunity to be a part of the Tumbleweeds Festival in hosting this amazing learning opportunity at our school.
Rotten Tomatoes summarized the film by posting, “Jo, a witty, 9-year-old terminally ill girl is taken back to her rural village to live out the rest of her short life. Her only comfort during these dull times are her dreams of being a Superhero, which prove to be something her rebellious teenage sister, Mwix, overprotective mother, Kathryn, and the entire village of Maweni think they can fulfill.” (Incidentally, 88 percent of Rotten Tomatoes’ followers liked the film.)
Wainaina is a Kenyan filmmaker born in Moscow, Russia. He lives and works in Nairobi, Kenya. Likarion started making films before branching to theater as an actor. He became a member of the Phoenix Players in Nairobi in 2007, and later worked as a theater director while working in the film industry as a gaffer, cinematographer and then director. As a cinematographer, he has also worked on a number of documentaries and commercials and has directed TV shows–both drama and sitcoms–that are currently airing on local TV stations in Kenya. He has also worked on TV commercials.
He has done a number of short films. One of his first films, “Between the Lines,” became the first Kenyan Film to be projected on an IMAX screen in Kenya. This film earned Wainaina a nomination at the AMCVA awards 2015 for “Best New Online Media.” His other works have garnered multiple nominations and awards. His most recent short film endeavor was taking part at the 48 Hour Film Festival 2015 where he and his team worked on the film, “Bait.” It won several awards including best director, audience choice awards and judges’ choice awards. The film was later selected as one of the top short films screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016.
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