Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
'Chocolate City' Finally Gets a Trailer + Release Date Set (Might It Steal Some of 'Magic Mike's' Summer Thunder?) 'Chocolate City' Finally Gets a Trailer + Release Date Set (Might It Steal Some of 'Magic Mike's' Summer Thunder?) Barbie Is Honoring Ava DuVernay (and Other "Sheroes") With Her Very Own Doll. Have a Look... Barbie Is Honoring Ava DuVernay (and Other "Sheroes") With Her Very Own Doll. Have a Look... BET Unveils 2015-2016 Slate Additions: New Original Scripted & Unscripted Series, Movies, News Specials & More BET Unveils 2015-2016 Slate Additions: New Original Scripted & Unscripted Series, Movies, News Specials & More Jada Pinkett Smith's Fish Mooney Will Return to 'Gotham' Streets with a New Look & Tougher Than Ever Jada Pinkett Smith's Fish Mooney Will Return to 'Gotham' Streets with a New Look & Tougher Than Ever Mo'Nique Presents Email Evidence That Shows She Was in Contention for the Role of Cookie in 'Empire' Mo'Nique Presents Email Evidence That Shows She Was in Contention for the Role of Cookie in 'Empire' Films & TV Series Coming to (and Leaving) Netflix's Streaming Library In May Films & TV Series Coming to (and Leaving) Netflix's Streaming Library In May James Earl Jones and Cicely Tyson Will Share a Stage Again in a Revival of 'The Gin Game' James Earl Jones and Cicely Tyson Will Share a Stage Again in a Revival of 'The Gin Game' Watch: Michael Jackson’s Movie Career Summed Up in 7 Minutes Watch: Michael Jackson’s Movie Career Summed Up in 7 Minutes Watch First Trailer for 'Desperate Housewives - Africa' + Individual Character Profiles Watch First Trailer for 'Desperate Housewives - Africa' + Individual Character Profiles Watch Trailer for Jordan Davis Documentary, '3 1/2 Minutes.' Coming to HBO This Fall Watch Trailer for Jordan Davis Documentary, '3 1/2 Minutes.' Coming to HBO This Fall Quentin Tarantino's 'H8ful Eight' Gets a Teaser Trailer (Samuel L. Jackson, Belinda Owino) Quentin Tarantino's 'H8ful Eight' Gets a Teaser Trailer (Samuel L. Jackson, Belinda Owino) Here Are the Cities & Theaters in Which Patrik-Ian Polk's Award-Winning Drama 'Blackbird' Will Open Here Are the Cities & Theaters in Which Patrik-Ian Polk's Award-Winning Drama 'Blackbird' Will Open Trailer: Pilot Project 'First Gen' (The Trials and Tribulations of Being a First Gen Nigerian-American) Trailer: Pilot Project 'First Gen' (The Trials and Tribulations of Being a First Gen Nigerian-American) Apparently, Many of You Aren't Pleased With the "All-New" 'Single Ladies'... What's Going on? Apparently, Many of You Aren't Pleased With the "All-New" 'Single Ladies'... What's Going on? What to Expect in Season 2 of 'Empire' (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More) What to Expect in Season 2 of 'Empire' (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More) Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Whoopi Goldberg & Daughter Alex Martin Enter Reality TV Series Ring Whoopi Goldberg & Daughter Alex Martin Enter Reality TV Series Ring Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Wanuri Kahiu's Feature Doc On Kenyan Afro-Electro-Pop Group Just A Band Gets Funding Boost

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act January 22, 2013 at 6:55PM

I love this group! Like many others, my introduction to them was their 2009 album 82, although it didn't seem to really gain international attention until the following year.
1
Just A Band

I love this group! Like many others, my introduction to them was their 2009 album 82, although it didn't seem to really gain international attention until the following year.

The video for the second single from the album - Ha-He - was probably what really did it, especially here in the USA. It was a spoof of blaxploitation films, featuring a protagonist named "Makmende". The video went super-viral within a short time, and was labeled Kenya’s first viral internet meme, leading to features in the national media on the group on CNN, in The Wall Street Journal and others.

Pumzi director Wanuri Kahiu (along with Anjali Nayar) who shouldn't be a stranger to S&A readers, is working on a feature documentary on the group, titled Just A Band: The Movie; she describes the project as...

... a kaleidoscopic portrait of four artistically eclectic twenty-somethings who form Kenya’s super nerdy Afro-electro-pop group Just A Band. The film follows them through projects and performances – from their out-of-control street parties in downtown Nairobi to the making of their blaxploitation music-mentry HA-HE, which became Kenya’s first Internet meme.

I'm sold. 

Announced last week, the project was one of 22 selected (from more than 2,000 applications, from filmmakers based in upwards of 100 countries) by Cinereach to be awarded over $500,000 in grants.

In addition to Cinereach's backing, the film was also 1 of 6 selected by the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Blue Ice Group last year, that received a total of $115,000 in development and production grants from the Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund in its first round of disbursements.

The Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund is a $1-million production fund that provides financial support to independent filmmakers based in developing African countries, with the goal of increasing the quality and quantity of social, cultural and political documentaries produced on the continent.

So the project is definitely moving ahead gradually, attracting financing and accolades along the way.

It's on my alerts list, so I'll continue to watch its progress, and report accordingly.

In the meantime, if you haven't seen it, here's the Ha-He blaxploitation-inspired music video that went viral 2 years ago, introducing Just A Band to international audiences:

This article is related to: Wanuri Kahiu


Shadow & ActNewsletter