Ekwa Msangi

writer • director • producer

    

Selling the Shadow to Support the Substance…
About


Ekwa has written & directed several shorts, most recently award-winning comedy Soko Sonko (The Market King), recipient of the Ousmane Sembene Short Film Development award, which produced her newly released film Farewell Meu Amor starring Tony Award nominee Sahr Ngauja, and actress Nana Mensah of the famed series An African City. She is currently in development on the feature-length sequel Farewell Amor and received the Jerome Foundation Grant, Tribeca All Access Fellowship, Cine Qua Non Lab Fellowship, IFP/No Borders, and Sundance Feature Film Development Fellowship to that end.

 

Ekwa has also written & directed several drama series for mainstream broadcasters in Kenya and MNET South Africa, including The Agency, MNET’s first-ever original hour-long Kenyan drama series. Ekwa was selected for the 2012 Focus Features’ Africa First Program and the 2016 Berlin Talent Campus. In the past Ekwa has been adjunct faculty at Tisch School of the Arts, as well as a recurring mentor in Mira Nair’s East Africa based Maisha Screenwriting Labs. Currently Ekwa is the resident educational instructor with the African Film Festival, and teaches Screenwriting at The New School and Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema, Brooklyn College.

Ekwa’s first webseries All My Friends Are Married launched to rave reviews, and she is in development on her first feature documentary about Tanzania’s first president, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, along with her award-winning podcast African Cinema NOW!

One of Ekwa’s key goals as an artist is to transform our society’s images and relationships with African cultures, and to empower African filmmakers in telling their stories.

  •   +1 347 770 – EKWA (3592)

Director's Reel

African CInema NOW!

Podcast

2017

Writer/Director/Producer Ekwa Msangi

Half hour episodes in conversation with African film artists discussing their work, inspiration, and everything between the pen and the screen.

Listen to us on Soundcloud

Farewell Meu Amor

Short Film

2016

  • Writer/Director/Producer: Ekwa Msangi
  • DP: Shawn Peters

On the morning of the long-awaited reunion with his exiled family, a man is faced with the heartbreak of a different type of parting – from his lover.

Farewell Meu Amor Website

Soko Sonko (The Market King)

Short Film
2014

  • Writer/Director/Producer: Ekwa Msangi
  • DP: Andrew “Dru” Mungai

When her mother falls sick, Kibibi’s father, Ed, is tasked with taking her to the market to get her hair braided before school begins. Soko Sonko is a hilarious, fish‐out of‐water roller‐coaster of a journey, about a well‐intended dad who braves the fires and goes where no man has gone before…because only women have been there!

Soko Sonko Website

All My Friends Are Married

Web series
2014

  • Director/Producer: Ekwa Msangi

All My Friends Are Married is a quirky comedic webseries with a blend of dry and physical humor. It highlights the joys, mistakes, hopes and pitfalls of being single & living in New York City. With tenderness, joy and irony we present the story of a women struggling to survive adulthood from her very imaginative point of view. This series captures the intersection where heaven meets earth; where adulthood and dreams force reality. It is here that faith, hope and love collides with bills, delayed promises and fears.
All My Friends Are Married depicts the life of a thirty something woman attempting to avoid spinsterhood in New York City.

All My Friends Are Married Website

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Current Projects

Farewell Amor (Working Title)

After 17 years of separation following the Angolan war, Walter’s wife Esther, and daughter Sylvia are finally granted visas to join him in the US. They quickly discover that the years of separation and struggle have turned them into absolute strangers: Esther has become a religious zealot and Walter is ashamed to admit that he doesn’t feel the same fire for her. Sylvia, whom he left when she was months old, is too dutiful and obedient to openly show the pain and confusion that she feels from the perceived abandonment of both her parents. Yet she is still in awe of this almost mythical figure that she’s been waiting all her life to meet. As Walter tries to reconnect to both, he is reluctant to release Linda, the lover he’s known for his past few years in exile. Instead, he tries to convince her to remain a part of his life, but she’s no longer willing to mark time or play second fiddle to his charade of a “normal family life.” As they all attempt to overcome the personal and political hurdles amongst them, they each rely on dance to remember themselves, and to find their way back to each other ...
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Eastlands

Feature Film to be shot in Nairobi, Kenya. (currently in development with Babylon International) An apolitical college professor comes to ...
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All My Friends Are Married

Web series to be shot in New York City, written by Mercedes Brazier-Thurman. A quirky comedic webseries with a blend ...
Read More

all my current projects

News & Views

Black Panther: Open Letter [in praise of] director Ryan Coogler

Comrade Ryan! What a magnificent triumph and a blessing your latest film is! As an African female filmmaker, born in ...
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/ News & Views

Self Care in a Time of Madness…

So Charlottesville and the KKK. And Barcelona. And any number of non-Western countries going through all sorts of political shit ...
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First there was Sarafina!, and now The Queen of Katwe

It's hard to explain what it's like to have grown up NEVER seeing your own image in a movie or ...
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/ Africa, African Film, Directors, News & Views

Not-for-Profit African Filmmaking

I've never considered how deeply steeped in Western culture screenwriting is until I had to teach it in Swahili. Seriously yo, ...
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all my news & views

PRESS

Jamati.com

In 12 minutes, writer-director Ekwa Msangi-Omari (‘The Agency’, ‘Block-D’) accomplishes a film that lives up to its title. ‘Taharuki’ deals with an important subject matter and illustrates the need for Africans (irrespective of ethnic differences) to continue to work together to achieve common goals ...
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The Standard Newspaper

The crew credits the show’s director Ekwa Msangi-Omari for taking Kenyan filmmaking to new heights. Her amiable approach encourages actors to use their individual touch and gives them some freedom to manoeuvre ...
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Jamati.com

The Agency is rife with rivalry, romance, intrigue, betrayal and triumph, all combined in an explosive series. Definitely a must-watch African tale! ...
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Ngwatilo Mawiyoo, Actress (The Agency, Block-D)

Ekwa discusses the role with the actor and gives him or her the chance to feel the role within the context of his or her personal experience. This puts me at ease ...
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Dorothy Ghettuba, Executive Producer (Block-D, Higher Learning, Saints)

Ekwa has been trained for this, and the [TV] show ends up looking like film ...
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CONTACT

Socials

FACEBOOK

Ekwapics
Ekwapics
The weekend of January 18th will always be so significant for me. It's a time of huge shifts and changes for me, and while it can be painful, that's what change is right? Painful. But also Good. Because its growth. Today is 16 years since my father passed, and in many ways he chose ME to help usher him into the next world. 10 years ago my first TV show launched across 35 countries in Africa on the day that Obama was inaugurated. The production alone was growth beyond measure, as was its cancellation, but it pushed me forward. Last year my father's best friend from college passed away, the day after my dad's anniversary and today I'm stepping into a new and significant chapter of growth at the Sundance Screenwriting Lab and then Catalyst Forum. And so much more happening in the world...its hard to capture it all in words other than to say that I'm growing. It's sometimes painful, always challenging, but welcomed. Aluta Continua and salute to my number one Baba: I know you have my back always. Asé and Amen.
Ekwapics
Ekwapics
FINALLY!! Been DYING to watch this!! #schoolgirlsmcc
Ekwapics
Ekwapics
The love vote has been cast!
Ekwapics
Ekwapics added 2 new photos.
Been a whirlwind week and still going strong!! farewellamor #Sundancecreativesummit #cinequanonlab
Ekwapics
Ekwapics updated their cover photo.

TWITTER


Excited and honored to be part of this incredible crew of unadulterated talent. Sundance Hoyeeeee!! https://t.co/MmsPJlMSxY
ekwapics photo
Sundance Institute @sundanceorg
Sundance Institute has selected fifteen screenwriters with twelve projects for the 2019 January Screenwriters Lab. Read more: https://t.co/hk1jFiMUUn https://t.co/jhDQFtBCI9

@Nijla1 @JinnFilm @azuspeak Thank you ladies, ya'll are brilliant! We appreciate you bringing back word so those of us on the way know how to prep ourselves! Good looking out! 👊🏾

Exciting! We're thrilled to announce that we'll be hosting the fourth annual MLK Now event on MLK Day next Monday! We hope to see you there: https://t.co/FFTEkgt9at! https://t.co/nrQh7xRJNs ekwapics photo

@AfricanFilmFest @wanuri @judykibinge @Lupita_Nyongo look at those radiant faces! such an honor to talk to these brilliant sister-artists

@vincho was it caffeine from kombucha or because you had kombucha in your hand at the moment you disregarded the warning?
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