The producers of the Oscar nominated Kenyan film are not happy after Ezekiel Mutua bragged about hosting a screening of Watu Wote in Las Vegas.
What angers them more is the fact that, the Kenya Film Classification boss did not seek out the permission of Hamburg Media School.
They have shot an official letter to the head of civil services and copied to KFCB, as well as to relevant ministries.
The letter read in part:
“Please note! After a lot of people asking on social media and in public domain, we are forced to release the following statement: As published on Twitter by Dr Mutua, KFCB sponsored a screening of our film, Watu Wote – All of Us’ on 8th of March at the Eclipse Theatre in Las Vegas, USA. We, as the owner of all copyrights for Watu Wote, want to point out very clear that KFCB and Dr Mutua had no right to do so, this screening was an illegal act and a copyright infringment.”
The statement continued, “All copyright for Watu Wote, and the rights to exhibit it privately or in public, lie with the Hamburg Media School. For distribution in all American territories, Shorts International, an entity of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (known as the OSCARS) hold that privilege.
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Further in the public domain, same as on the official KFCB website and in their press release KFCB and Dr Mutua claim to officially attended this ceremony of the 90th Oscars in support of our film together with us. Also this fact is incorrect. Contrary to this claims Dr Mutua was not in attendance at the ceremony, and did not participate in the Oscars with us. He never received an invitation and never was asked to join us. This was an extraordinary privilege for our cast and crew members.
We wish to take this opportunity to say that the Kenyan & German cast & crew, and the public, are very proud of this film and its success – a success that is undeniably down to the extraordinary commitment of the Kenyan team. We are proud of us.
Nevertheless we understand the KFCB to be the regulatory body in Kenya accountable for film compliance, and therefore the experts in the fields of copyrights. So we need to ask, how it comes that an institution like this denied several times every communication with us, but then sponsor a screening without owning any rights of the film or getting necessary permissions?”
Read the entire letter here…