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Hawa Essuman

Hawa Essuman (2012)

Hawa Essuman (born 1980) is a Kenyan actress and film director whose first feature film, Soul Boy (2010), received a series of awards.[1][2]


Born in Hamburg, Germany, on 23 January 1980, she is the daughter of Ghanaian parents who brought her up in Nairobi, Kenya.[3][1] After several appearances in the theatre, she moved into production work, first on television commercials and documentaries, then on a local drama series, Makutano Junction. She created and directed Selfish? in 2008, followed by three short films in 2008, The Lift, Cold War and Coming Out.[2]

With the encouragement and assistance of Tom Tykwer, she directed Soul Boy (2010). Based on a story by Billy Kahora, it originated at a workshop organized by the German association One Fine Day.[4] Presented at over 40 film festivals around the world, it won a number of awards.[2]


Essuman's Soul Boy has won the following awards:

  • Dioraphte Audience Award, International Film Festival Rotterdam[5]
  • Veto Award, Afrika-Filmfestival, Leuven, Belgium
  • Signis Award, Zanzibar International Film Festival, Zanzibar, Tanzania[6]
  • Polish Filmmakers Association Award, Ale Kino!, Poznań, Poland
  • Best Short Film, Kalasha Awards, Nairobi, Kenya[7]
  • Best Lead Actor: Samson Odhiambo, Kalasha Awards, Nairobi, Kenya[8]
  • Best Scriptwriter: Billy Kahora, Kalasha Awards, Nairobi, Kenya[9]
  • Best Actor: Samson Odhiambo, Kenya International Film Festival, Nairobi, Kenya[10]
  • Best East African Film, Kenya International Film Festival, Nairobi, Kenya[11]
  • Special Mention "Passeurs d’images" prize, FESTIVAL CINÉ JUNIOR (International Film Festival for Young people), Paris, France
  • The Young Jury Prize, FESTIVAL CINÉ JUNIOR (International Film Festival for Young people), Paris, France
  • Spiritual Film Festival Award, Paris
  • Best Children's Film Award at the Film Festival Recklinghausen (Germany) 2011[12]
  • Best Editor: Ephantus Ng'ethe Gitungo, African Movie Academy Awards[13]


  1. ^ a b "Hawa Essuman" (in German). Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "About the director". African Film Festival New York. Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  3. ^ "Liff awards 2011" (PDF). Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  4. ^ "Hawa Essuman and the Soul Boy Project". African Women in Cinema Blog. 28 August 2010. Retrieved 10 February 2016. 
  5. ^ "IFFR". IFFR (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-04-27. 
  6. ^ Signis Award, Zanzibar International Film Festival Archived 2010-08-25 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ "". Retrieved 2018-04-27. 
  8. ^ "". Retrieved 2018-04-27. 
  9. ^ "". Retrieved 2018-04-27. 
  10. ^ Kenya International Film Festival: Best Actor
  11. ^ Kenya International Film Festival: Best East African Film
  12. ^ Recklinghausen, Kirchliches Filmfestival (2018-03-01). "Programm 2018 - 9. Kirchliches Filmfestival Recklinghausen". (in German). Retrieved 2018-04-27. 
  13. ^ Best Editor, African Movie Academy Awards Archived 2011-04-03 at the Wayback Machine.

External links