Queen of Katwe: African success story becomes a Disney production

Lupita Nyong'o and Madina Nalwanga star in the triumphant true story QUEEN OF KATWE, directed by Mira Nair.

Lupita Nyong’o and Madina Nalwanga star in the triumphant true story QUEEN OF KATWE, directed by Mira Nair.

Queen of Katwe is an upcoming Disney theatrical release and a colorful true story of Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan young chess prodigy who becomes a Woman Candidate Master after her performances at World Chess Olympiads. After having viewed the official trailer, we were already filled with excitement. And now the release is confirmed. The film will be released on September 30 in general theaters in North America.

Queen of Katwe is directed by Mira Nair, the film stars Golden Globe® nominee David Oyelowo (Selma), Oscar® winner and Tony Award® nominee Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years A Slave), and newcomer Madina Nalwanga (Monsoon Wedding).  David Oyelowo’s character is based upon Robert Katende, Founder and Director of the Sports Outreach Chess Academy. Discover more about his story through this documentary “A Fork A Spoon And A Knight”.

Our impressions

Phiona Mutesi’s life carries an inspiring story, we call “from the slums to the spotlight”. Though I did not grow up in a village in Africa, I can identify with the pursuit of dreams and a better life of the main character. I believe that Africans in the Diasporas and on the continent can identify to this story in some way.

Not all movies based on real-life stories of Africans draw both the African and non-African public. However, we expect that this movie will do that. Firstly, Phiona Mutesi carries a story that Africans know and can relate to. Secondly, the movie stars actual African characters. And another thing: they actually have the African accents right. Not all productions succeed in bringing that out right all the time, which can cause a viewer that actually knows the Ugandan culture to be turned off. Having listed all these things, here is the bottom line: we can’t wait to see this movie!

More to the story

Discover more about Phiona’s story on Life Stories.

Have a look at the trailer below.

Queen of Katwe trailer

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