Pro Tools
•Register a festival or a film
Submit film to festivals Promote for free or with Promo Packages

FILMFESTIVALS | 24/7 world wide coverage

Welcome !

Enjoy the best of both worlds: Portal for Film & Festival News, exploring the best of the festivals community.  

An adventure exploring, from dreams to reality, the emerging talents in our community.

Launched in 1995, relentlessly connecting films to festivals, reporting and promoting festivals worldwide.

A brand new website will soon be available. Covid-19 is not helping, stay safe meanwhile.

For collaboration, editorial contributions, or publicity, please send us an email here

User login


RSS Feeds 

Martin Scorsese Masterclass in Cannes

Best Trailers for November 2020


Animation from Egypt & Africa

The History of African Animation
By Mohamed Ghazala

African animation started about 70 years ago in

Egypt and was founded by the Frenkel brothers. It’s interesting to note that the first pioneers of animation in Africa were not professional artists or animators; they were just a group of Jewish carpenters who immigrated to Egypt from

Russia in search of freedom and work. They achieved the unexpected; the first African animated cartoon was created. Despite problems with equipment and financing they managed to create the first animated film throughout

Africa. The duration of this film “In Vain” (“Mafish fayda”) is just 10 minutes. Its main hero was Mish Mish Effendi, who was the prototype of the well-known Mickey Mouse. Unfortunately this film was lost when

Cairo burned in 1951. However, the 2nd film that the Frenkel brothers made, “National defense”, is still preserved and fortunately we have a chance to watch this unique cartoon today. After this, there were many endeavors practically in every country throughout the African continent, but they were just individual attempts, not in group or association.

Right through the history of African animation there are certain names that we must remember for those who played important roles such as Mustafa Alessane (Niger), Ali Moheb (in 1965 he established the first department of animation on Egyptian TV), and Kabochi (Congo). These people made unique attempts to present African animation. African animation is not yet a consistent industry within the continent and this is due to our economical situation making it difficult to produce films on a mass scale. Animation differs from other forms of art in that it cannot be produced individually; instead it requires assistants, finance, equipment and much more. The population of

Ethiopia is 80 million people but there are just 3 animators. There are no orders for work, no equipment, no new projects.

Glints of hope come from European countries and their cultural centers providing financial support to animators and their projects. For example the “Africa Animated” project in

Kenya which was initiated by UNESCO when its adviser in Nairobi Alonso Aznar established it in order to build on the unique case of African art. He invited professional academic animators to teach artists from

Africa through participation in workshop projects. In the last 3 years 3 projects were held which gathered animators from more than 10 African countries who brought with them their folk stories and motives and tried to mix pure African arts with the techniques of modern animation. The 3 projects resulted in more than 20 short films and animators after returning home had the chance to use their experience in their native countries.

This ongoing project is good news for the industry. Despite an abundance of talent, African animation faces many challenges. Production studios, equipment and financing are in short supply and distribution is limited.

I myself participated in the last project of “Africa animated” in Nairobi (the previous one was in South Africa and the first one in Kenya and

Tanzania). Though these films are very unique, they are made with the best techniques and by the best professionals of animation in

Africa (and that is why they cannot give you the complete image of African animation- in reality there is a shortage of equipment and professionals ultimately resulting in animation with a different quality and style.) The current support is still not enough and does not provide fully for the needs of African animation. Almost all financial support for cultural purposes in

Africa is intended for cinema or classical arts. But despite the obstacles, African directors continue to produce innovative animated films that are winning over international audiences.

Currently African animation only exists in Egypt and

South Africa. There are about 50 animation studios which produce animation commercially for Egypt and other African and Middle Eastern countries (Kuwait, Yemen, UAE, Saudi Arabia,

Libya, etc.) Although

Africa has a long history of developing its animation, it still has not reached the level of animation as those countries that started even after it. We have a very small number of academies teaching animation and it is very hard to get all necessary professional equipments, software and the trainers which would help us to educate generations of animators with their own tradition of animation, or individual African style of animation without being fully influenced by current Western and Japanese styles.

Comments (1)

African Experimental Animation

I am looking for suggestions as to original, experimental animation film / video from the African continent. I'd be grateful for suggestions.


The Bulletin Board

> The Bulletin Board Blog
> Partner festivals calling now
> Call for Entry Channel
> Film Showcase
 The Best for Fests

Meet our Fest Partners 

Following News

Interview with AFM Director


Interview with Cannes Marche du Film Director 


Interview with the Parasite director

Brad Pitt and Leonard Maltin Interviewed dailies live coverage from

> Live from India
> Live from LA
> IFFI Goa
> Lost World Film Festival
> Locarno
> Toronto
> Venice
> San Sebastian
> BFI London

> Film Festival Days
> Tallinn Black Nights

> Palm Springs Film Festival
> Kustendorf
> Rotterdam
> Sundance
Santa Barbara Film Festival SBIFF
> Berlin 
> Fantasporto
Houston WorldFest
Cannes / Marche du film online

Useful links for the indies:

Big files transfer
> Celebrities / Headlines / News / Gossip
> Clients References
> Crowd Funding
> Deals

> Festivals Trailers Park
> Film Commissions 
> Film Schools
> Financing
> Independent Filmmaking
> Motion Picture Companies and Studios
> Movie Sites
> Movie Theatre Programs
> Music/Soundtracks 
> Posters and Collectibles
> Professional Resources
> Screenwriting
> Search Engines
> Self Distribution
> Search sites – Entertainment
> Short film
> Streaming Solutions
> Submit to festivals
> Videos, DVDs
> Web Magazines and TV

A question for Jennifer Aniston from Richard Hobert winner at SBIFF 2020 :

Top 3 Tech Innovations in Film History

> Other resources
+ SUBSCRIBE to the weekly Newsletter
+ Connecting film to fest: Marketing & Promotion
Special offers and discounts
Festival Waiver service

About ghazala

Mohamed Ghazala
(Fine Arts Faculty -Minia University)



View my profile
Send me a message