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Queen of Katwe set for Kampala screening in October

Latest info reaching our desk has it that the Queen of Katwe will screen on October 1st to 2nd 2016 in Kampala. It will be a Special Event Screening and Press Events of Queen Of Katwe according to Walt Disney Company Africa.


The nationwide release is 7th October 2016.

Queen of Katwe

Queen of Katwe is a 2016 biographical sports drama film directed by Mira Nair from a screenplay by William Wheeler. Starring David Oyelowo, Lupita Nyong’o, and Madina Nalwanga; the film depicts the life of Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan chess prodigy from Katwe who becomes a Woman Candidate Master after her performances at World Chess Olympiads.

The film is produced by Walt Disney Pictures and ESPN Films, and set for a limited release in North America on September 23, 2016, followed by a general theatrical release on September 30. The film was screened at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival.


Madina Nalwanga as Phiona Mutesi

David Oyelowo as Robert Katende

Lupita Nyong’o as Nakku Harriet

Martin Kabanza as Mugabi Brian

Taryn Kyaze as Night (as Taryn “Kay” Kyaze)

Ivan Jacobo as Young Richard

Nicolas Levesque as Older Richard

Ntare Mwine as Tendo

Maurice Kirya as Theo

Esther Tebandeke as Sara Katende


In 2012, Tim Crothers published a book for ESPN titled, The Queen of Katwe: A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl’s Dream of Becoming a Grandmaster, which chronicled Phiona Mutesi’s life. Walt Disney Pictures optioned the rights to the book that same year.[11] Tendo Nagenda, Disney’s senior creative executive, developed the project into production.[12] Nagenda went to visit Mira Nair at her Ugandan home to tell the story of Mutesi. Nair was captivated by the story. After meeting with Mutesi, her mother Harriet, and the chess group run by Mutesi’s coach Robert Katende; Nair invited screenwriter William Wheeler to come to Kampala to conduct substantial interviews with the principal figures as a foundation for a script.

Queen of Katwe
A scene from Queen of Katwe

The cast was announced in January 2015, where David Oyelowo and Lupita Nyong’o were in negotiations to star in the film as Robert Katende and Harriet Mutesi. Nyong’o was Nair’s first choice for the role of Harriet. Nyong’o said her decision to play Harriet took “several seconds”. Oyelowo was also Nair’s first choice for the role of Robert and he quickly accepted the role for the film. However, Nair claimed that finding an actress to play the role of Phiona Mutesi was the most difficult part of making the film. The search for casting Phiona began in July 2014 and the production team have auditioned seven hundred girls by the end of the year. Queen of Katwe’s casting director found Ugandan dancer Madina Nalwanga in a community dance class and the newcomer was cast as Phiona.

Principal photography began in April 2015 and wrapped in June of that year after fifty-four days of shooting. The film was shot entirely in Katwe in Kampala, Uganda and Johannesburg, South Africa.


Queen of Katwe premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival on September 10, 2016. The film is also scheduled to be screened at the Urban World Festival on September 22. Later, the film will make its European debut at the BFI London Film Festival on October 9.

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