LAST DANCE IN KALOLENI brings to life Kenya’s political, social and musical transformations in a dramatic romantic story of a love triangle and dance competitions.
LAST DANCE IN KALOLENI is a drama about the struggle of ordinary people for an acceptable future in the face of political and personal uncertainty and upheaval. Set in 1959 Nairobi, Kenya, on the eve of independence from colonial rule, the story follows the life of Miriam, a young housewife living in African Railway housing estates, who loves to dance. Jolted out of her secure surroundings of the Railways by her husband, Aleke’s industrial accident, she finds herself thrown into the center of political and personal transformation. Miriam’s life, dreams of upward mobility and sense of self must be reconsidered as she struggles to find a way to survive. In the process she runs into an old flame, Tipa, who complicates her decisions. Her ability to dance proves essential to her survival and the final choices she makes.
We seek to produce a professional internationally distributed film made in Kenya, which tells a uniquely Kenyan, and particularly Nairobi, story of identity and struggle. Set in 1959, LAST DANCE IN KALOLENI is a nuanced, full and rich portrait of a time whose impacts can still be felt today in the urban landscape of Nairobi. We would like the audience to take away the sounds, feeling, smells, tastes, heat, tensions, hopes and dreams of Nairobi of 1959, of that moment of great possibility and perhaps great loss at the birth of a new country.
The script is complete and we have already completed a short movie incorporating the dance, music and ambiance that the full movie will embody.
We want to tell this story because Nairobi of today is a rapidly changing city. As the old city is brought down to make room for the new city, the historic African presence of Nairobi is disappearing. Forgotten in the process is the space of dreams centered in the world of labor, music and politics that created middle class Kenya and that built the city to what it is today. We are passionate about this story for its ability to bring back those times and those dreams that imagined life and the city yet to come.
Estimated Cost and Timeline
We plan to shoot this film in the later part of 2016 and have it ready for distribution in early 2017. We have done a review of dance films and they tend to be profitable and have durable appeal. LAST DANCE IN KALOLENI is a drama set in a particular period as well as a dance film, both of which adds to the cost of production, but also increases potential viewers.
We are raising $5,000 to hire a professional film budget planner to develop a line-item budget. The line-item budgets assigns a cost to every line in the script. This will allow us to realistically budget and plan for the main movie. If we are able to hire the person for less than this, we will also use the funds to cover some other pre-production costs, including auditions for actors and dancers.
Risks and challenges
The main risk would be that we don't raise sufficient funding to get the full movie completed. We are making every effort to minimize this risk and in fact this is one core reason we are currently raising $5000 to hire a professional film budget planner.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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