Soul Boy, winner of the Best Film at the 1st Luxor African Film Festival 2012, is directed by Hawa Essuman and produced by Tom Tykwer and Marie Steinmann.
A 14 year-old Abila lives with his parents in Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya. One morning the teenager discovers his father ill and delirious. Someone has stolen his soul, mumbles the father as he sits huddled in a corner. Abila is shocked and confused but wants to help his father and goes in search of a suitable cure. Supported by his friend Shiku who is the same age as him, he learns that his father has gambled his soul away in the company of a spiritual woman.
The teenager doesn't want to believe it and sets about looking for the witch. When he finally discovers her in the darkest corner of the ghetto, she gives him seven challenging tasks to save his father's lost soul. Abila embarks on an adventurous journey which leads him right through the microcosm of his home town.
About the director
Hawa Essuman is a visionary of film in Kenya. Born in the 1980s into a Ghanaian family, Hawa self identifies as Ghanaian-Kenyan by virtue of the fact that she grew up in Kenya and calls it home. She performed in various theatre plays and two films before she found her way into the world of production, where she worked on TV commercials and documentaries before directing on a Kenyan TV drama series. She made her film acting debut in Project Daddy (2004) and featured in the Italian film Piano Solo (2007).
She first directed an hour long film called 'Selfish?' and later 'The Lift' both released in 2009. Soul Boy, her most recent film, has screened at various film festivals around the world and has won a number of awards. She is currently developing her next project, a feature film set at the Kenya coast titled 'Djin'.
- Winner Best Feature Film, 1st Luxor African Film Festival, Luxor, Egypt, 2012
- Signis Award, Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF), 2010
- Dioraphte Audience Award, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Holland
- Best Feature Film Award, Rwanda Film Festival
For more information and to view the trailer, visit the Soul Boy website.