Kenyan film ‘Subira’ has been submitted for the 92nd Oscar nominations, in the International Feature category.
This submission is only the first step in a series of stages the movie has to undergo before winning.
Speaking about the nomination, director Sippy Chadha told Word Is she is extremely proud and honoured to be able to present ‘Subira’ to the 92nd Academy Awards in 2020.
“It’s an inspirational story based on my own life experiences and what I saw women go through in Lamu. To be recognised and get an international platform to tell our stories is the ultimate freedom anyone can ask for,” she said.
Sippy says she is extremely proud.
“My dream is to make films for audiences in Kenya and internationally, and this platform gives me the ‘visibility’ to take my films to the next level. I plan to direct more Kenyan films that resonate with audiences worldwide. Touch, move and inspire them,” she said.
‘Subira’ was first screened as a short film in 2008 and was a tremendous success in Europe, after being screened in Brussels as part of an African film festival. It won 15 international awards.
Sippy says Subira’s story comes from a place of deep personal experience. She recalls that while growing up as a girl, in a traditional family in India, her entire life was laid out in front of her.
“Subira’s theme is very topical. It’s a female theme of a woman finding her power by living out her dream,” she said.
“The classical hero’s journey of taking the reigns of your life and making things happen. Subira lives in a world of traditions that haven’t evolved with time, hence making them oppressive.”
She says it takes courage and inner strength to live your dreams beyond what is simply expected of you.
At the same time, the film also deals with the male aspect, who may also be trapped by his powerlessness.
“Once Subira finds the courage and inner strength to achieve her dream, her husband can find himself and be authentic and find his bliss. I believe we can’t dance alone, it takes two to tango and the dance is only complete once the other also finds inner freedom and joy,” she said.
‘Subira’ is the only Kenyan film submitted for the Oscar Awards.