The Forbes Africa 30 Under 30 list identifies the most creative, determined and forward-looking artists, entrepreneurs, and active agents of change across the dynamic African continent. The list, in its fifth edition, compiles the list for Top 30 Under 30 in the Sports, Business, Technology and Creative Sector. This year, one of our own has made it in the list: Njue Kevin!
Join us in congratulating Njue Kevin in making it on the Forbes Africa Top 30 Under 30 Creatives!
“Aside from making more films that are socially conscious, I plan on growing the company to be financially sustainable in a way that we can recoup investment into more films by other filmmakers and emerging talents, too. Like my own journey, most people starting out in the art industry, not many have support, from the community and in their education because film is underrated. My goal is to marry film and business in order to create more opportunities for filmmakers to be exposed to the industry from a young age. I believe it is our responsibility to make the journey of filmmaking more exciting and liberating for the generations to come.”
~Njue Kevin, in response to making the list.
A summary of why we are happy and inspired by him:
At the age of 27, what Njue has achieved, and is on way to achieving, is an inspiration. Studying a university course he had little interest in, it took his own personal drive and investment to complete one, two, three and four short films. Perhaps the most remarkable and signalling of his potential was Intellectual Scum, a short film that challenged racial politics between white and black men in African leadership, and how this had a great impact on political and social development. The short film was thought-provoking and those who have seen it appreciated its candidness. Intellectual Scum has been screened in over 13 film festivals worldwide between 2015 and 2017, most notable, Film Africa, London's biggest annual celebration of the best African cinema brought to you by the Royal African Society. The ability to see film and art as an active and powerful tool to engage in political topics is what makes Njue stand out in the Kenyan film industry.
Having worked with him over the past four years, we have seen Njue express his vision for the industry, calling for the consistent drive for filmmakers to release content in their own terms and based on their own experiences. In 2017, he made a bold move and ventured into writing and directing his first feature film. With little funding, he insisted on having the film be funded by African enthusiasts who would help to tell the story of a rookie paramedic who spends 18 hours in an ambulance for the life of a road crash victim. The film, titled 18 HOURS, became a tool for advocating for the advancement of emergency care in Kenya.
It is the marriage of Njue's creative vision and the social experiences of his audiences that made him be among the top 5 rising African filmmakers to watch out for, according to Skylife Business Magazine. With 18 HOURS, Njue's directorial debut won the Best African Movie award at the AMVCAs (African Movie and Viewers Choice Awards), 2018, among other categories such as Best East-African Movie and Best Editing. He was also nominated for the AMAA (African Movie Academy Awards), for Best First Feature Film Director, 2018. Due to his work on 18 HOURS and the short films before it, Njue was also named in the Business Daily Africa's Top 40 Under 40 Men.
Through 18 HOURS, he made his first official step into making the film industry in Kenya move forward in the entrepreneurial effort to make the industry financially sustainable. It is this faith and vision to merge film and business that drives us, too. More so, we are not only inspired by what he has done so far, but in what he will do in the foreseeable future.
Follow Njue Kevin:
Rocque Pictures Team