Lights, camera, action! The 9th edition of the highly anticipated Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCA) took center stage on the thrilling night of May 20, 2023, at the prestigious Eko Hotel in Lagos, Nigeria. As the dazzling event unfolded, it became clear that the evening would heavily favor the Nigerian and Ghanaian film industries -deservedly so. Kenya got her piece of the action proudly walking away with three awards.
Despite facing fierce competition from their West African counterparts, Kenyan filmmakers made their mark with an outstanding 17 nominations, the highest ever received by Kenya at the AMVCA. However, it was the beloved movie “Click Click Bang” that stole the spotlight, winning not one, but two well-deserved accolades. The film, which had audiences on the edge of their seats, secured the titles of Best Movie, East Africa, and Best Indigenous Language, Swahili (Movie/TV Series).
Another Kenyan gem that sparkled brightly at the AMVCA was “Njoro Wa Uba,” a side-splitting situational comedy series centered around a financially struggling taxi driver in Nairobi. The Maisha Magic show secured the award for Best Original Comedy Series. The film’s writer and co-producer, Abel Mutua, took to social media to express his happiness. He used the phrases “elated” and “I can’t keep calm” to describe the overwhelming joy shared by the film’s team and fans. Mutua expressed gratitude to the visionary investors who believed in the project and to the loyal fans who supported and watched the film. He vowed to continue pushing boundaries with his team at PhilIt TV to create even more remarkable movies.
Under the theme of “Cultural Diversity,” this year’s AMVCA celebrated the rich tapestry of Africa’s varied cultures, languages, regions, and film mediums. The organizers went the extra mile to ensure that diverse voices were heard and appreciated. In an effort to recognize the growing influence of digital content creators, the event welcomed these innovative storytellers, with Multichoice looking to formally acknowledge their contributions in the upcoming editions.
The entire extravaganza was beamed live across all Africa Magic channels, bringing the glitz and glamour of the red carpet directly into viewers’ homes. While the night was filled with unforgettable moments, the biggest honors were bestowed upon Nigerian director Kunle Afolayan. His feature film “Anikulapo” triumphed as the Best Overall Movie, solidifying Afolayan’s reputation as a visionary filmmaker. The film garnered a staggering 16 nominations, a testament to its captivating storytelling. He also won the Best Director. Among the other notable winners were Tobi Bakre and Bimbo Ademoye, who took home the awards for Best TV Show Actor and Actress, respectively, for their outstanding performances in “Brotherhood” and “Selina.” Loukman Ali, a talented Ugandan writer, and producer, was crowned the best in his craft for his remarkable contribution to the same show as Bakre. The legendary Nigerian entertainer Patience Ozokwo was honored with the prestigious Industry Merit Award, a well-deserved recognition of her countless cinematic achievements and her status as an icon in the African film industry.