My Friend Fela (Meu Amigo Fela)


Sequoia 2 Tue, Oct 8, 2019 5:30 PM
Century Larkspur 3 Sun, Oct 13, 2019 11:45 AM
Film Info
Section:Music Films
Running Time:92 min.
Premiere Status:US
Director:Joel Zito Araújo
Producer:Ariel de Bigualt
Fidelis Duker
Luiza Botelho Almeida
Temitope Duker
Cinematographer:Cleumo Segond
Editor:Isabel de Castro
Print Source:Casa de Criação Cinema e Artes
Note Writer:Jesse Knight


The definitive account of Nigerian musician and civil rights activist Fela Kuti, this exuberant portrait peels back the many layers of a complex and turbulent but brilliant mind. Through enlightening remembrances by Fela’s friends, family, ex-lovers, and his ebullient biographer Carlos Moore, the life and impact—and earth-shaking music—of one of the most influential figures in the Pan-African movement is resurrected in vivid and intimate form. Wielding his music as a “politico-cultural manifesto,” Fela’s rise as the pioneer of the style of music known as Afrobeat in the 1960s would dovetail against a volatile backdrop of social injustice. His outspokenness in criticizing the Nigerian government and other dictatorships bled into his art and planted seeds for revolution. My Friend Fela is a richly textured portrait of a defining artist as told through the eyes of those closest to him, shedding new and varied light on an enigmatic and controversial original..

Thank you to our Community Partner Osher Marin JCC/Kanbar Performing Arts Center!

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Additional Information

In addition to directing, Joel Zito Araújo has produced 29 award-winning documentaries, features, and narrative shorts raising awareness of social issues in Brazil and its Afro-Brazilian population. Among his films are Daughters of the Wind (2004), which brought together the largest Black cast in the history of Brazilian cinema and won eight awards at the prestigious Gramado Film Festival, and Cinderellas, Wolves, and One Enchanted Prince (2008), a documentary about sexual tourism and exploitation in Brazil.