Rafiki was the top performing film in Kenya for the week it was unbanned ending Saturday 29 September, beating Hollywood films like The Nun and Night School.
Rafiki became the second highest grossing Kenyan film of all time even though it only had a seven day, court-authorized, theatrical run in three Kenyan cities.
The film is once again banned in Kenya. The filmmakers are in the process of further court action to have the film permanently unbanned.
Over 6,500 people watched the film in Kenya on the big screen over the seven day period which also saw hundreds of cinema goers being turned away from venues due to full houses. The film grossed more than $33,000 in the week. Rafiki’s Kenyan distributor, Trushna Patel from Crimson Media said;
“Over a 7 day release, RAFIKI has experienced a rush at Prestige Cinema only felt before at the BLACK PANTHER release earlier this year. Even though there was limited screen time alloted at the last minute after the court ruling, the film was performing to full house capacity at all shows running, a welcome scene for a Kenyan film.”
Rafiki made history earlier this year as the first Kenyan film selected for the prestigious Cannes Film Festival and has gone onto screen at festivals around the world.
In the month of October alone it is screening in festivals in more than 20 countries. It is currently in cinemas across France and Belgium to be followed by theatrical releases in USA, Japan, Switzerland, Holland, Scandinavia, South Africa and has been invited to screen in at least six other African countries.
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Allan Bangirana is a freelance writer for Newslibre & Spur Magazine. He is passionate about tech, games and occasionally writes about entertainment, lifestyle and so much more.