• In the News

British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor says films can help drive change in Africa


By Sarah Shearman

April 12, 2019


OXFORD, England (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Films telling the stories of innovators in Africa have the power to transform the way people see the continent and drive social change, Oscar-nominated actor Chiwetel Ejiofor said on Friday.

Ejiofor’s comments came as he appeared at Britain’s leading conference on social entrepreneurship, the Skoll World Forum, to discuss his latest film, “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind”.

The film, which he directed, starred in and for which he wrote the screenplay, is based on the true story of William Kamkwamba who helped save his Malawian village from drought by building a power-generating windmill from scrap.

Highlighting young people who identify and find solutions to local problems was important to encourage social businesses, said Ejiofor, who won a BAFTA award and Oscar nod for playing Solomon Northup in the Oscar-winning film “12 Years a Slave”.

“Telling authentic stories about who people are, not just what they are, will enrich the cultural space in a very radical way,” he said on the final day of the four-day forum in Oxford. Read more