USIU-Africa Alumni Association Chair produces film featured on Netflix; garners 12 Kalasha Award nominations

40 Sticks is the fourth Kenyan film to debut on Netflix in the past two months. The film is produced by among others, the Chair of the USIU-Africa Alumni Association, Mr. James Cutha Gathere. Photo: Courtesy.

By Brenda Odhiambo

The Kenyan film industry recently received a big boost as one more Kenyan film was featured on Netflix. The film, 40 Sticks, is a thriller that premiered on the global streaming platform on Friday November 20, 2020, and lists among its executive producers, James Cutha Gathere, the current USIU-Africa Alumni Association Chairperson.

The film, directed by Victor Gatonye and based on a fictional story created by Frank G. Maina and written by Voline Ogutu, the story revolves around a group of death row prisoners trapped in a crashed prison bus and their fight for survival, while a mysterious killer is lurking in the shadows. Speaking to CTW, Mr. Gathere noted that the recognition of Kenyan films by Netflix was a sure sign that the local film industry was rapidly evolving.

“The fact that in the past few months, we have had three Kenyan films feature on Netflix is a true testament that the Kenyan film industry is growing. It is exciting to see what other Kenyan stories will be featured on the global stage,” he said.

“So far the film has received amazing reviews from a cross-section of Kenyans, and it’s currently sitting at the top, number 1 movie in Kenya on Netflix (3 days running) after debuting at number 3,” he added.

“What makes this debut even more exciting is the fact that not only will the film be shown across Africa, US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, but also that it has garnered 12 nominations in the Kalasha Awards, making it one of the second highest nominees this year,” he noted.

“We are excited to be part of the films that will be honored at the 2020 edition of the awards, alongside other Kenyan productions that have made waves in the local and global scene,” he added.

40 sticks stars Robert Agengo, Bilal Mwaura, Andreo Kamau, Xavier Ywaya, Shivisike Shivisi, Arabron Nyyeneque and Cajetan Boy.

To watch the film trailer, click here. For more information about how to vote for the film at the Kalasha awards, click here.

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