ZIO MWALE, Lusaka
HE SHOULD have probably been here when the movie first premiered at Freshview Cinemas and Ster Kinekor, nonetheless, Zambia actor Patrick Mutukwa, who plays a role in Black Panther should still be feeling the love around.
Except for a few haters, almost the whole country, well, at least most movie freaks, are proud that a Zambia actor was part of the movie, which on Tuesday was confirmed by Disney executives as the 20th highest release of all time worldwide.
But do not stop counting yet, the numbers are still coming in.
The movie by Marvel Studios, is directed by Ryan Coogler, who co-wrote the screenplay with Joe Robert Cole, and stars Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa/Black Panther, alongside Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, and Andy Serkis.
It is a good place to be for any actor, no matter the margin of contribution.
Patrick acted as a border warrior and also assisted with accents.
He has been duly credited.
But the Lusaka-born and Livingstone-raised actor has not forgotten where he is coming from.
On Sunday, he met with Zambian actors at Chita Lodge for an interactive session that was facilitated by the National Association for Media Arts (NAMA).
Patrick talked big.
He talked about putting up an art school in the country aimed at improving the local film industry.
It is what budding local filmmakers have been crying for.
But Patrick, who is in the country for two weeks, also revealed that he will be working on a movie with Zambian film producers, directors, actors and actresses.
He believes that Zambia needs a school where actors and actresses can be trained in order for the industry to cross borders.
“This school will admit anyone interested in arts, it is going to be for Zambia because I can see that the film industry is slowly picking up but we need to learn some of the basics needed in film production,” he said.
On the movie, Patrick said that he is working on a movie that will be produced in Zambia and will feature local talent.
“We’ve a lot to show in Zambia, imagine Hollywood does not have Victoria Falls, Kuomboka ceremony nor the Nyanja word, they had to look for a person like me to help them bring it out, so we really need to use what we have,” he said.
“We can start slowly but we need to be supportive of one another, help each other and advise one another in a right way because we have a long way to go.”
Notable faces at the interactive session included NAMA chairman Patrick “Sauloshi” Salubusa and a few faces from “Zuba”, the so-called first telenovela in the country.
ZIO MWALE, Lusaka