Kundai Marunya Arts Correspondent
Widely circulated local feature film “Cook Off” has won two awards at Cambria Film Festival in California, United States.
“Cook Off” scooped the Nancy Green Founder’s Award for the best film at the festival and the Audience Award Best Feature, an accolade for the viewers’ favourite film.
The recent awards bring to six, the number of accolades won by the film, with two having been won at the Zimbabwe International Film Festival (ZIFF) and the other two at the National Arts and Merits Awards (NAMA).
The film’s co-producer and director Tomas Brickhill said he was overjoyed with the win.
“In total we now have six awards, two from ZIFF, two from NAMA and these from Cambria. We have also been finalists nominated for the student jury award at Afrika Film Festival in Leuven, Belgium and nominated for the best film at Ambrosia Film festival in Moscow, Russia,” said Brickhill.
“We did not win but it’s still great to be nominated. At Rotterdam International Film Festival (IFFR) we were given a 4,2 out of five star rating by the audience.
“We ended up coming 38th out of 187 films that were in the festival, which is good considering the little money we had compared to the budgets of other films and considering that this was an earlier cut of the film that has since been improved and had sound remixed.”
“Cook Off” is a tale of a single mother who enters a reality cooking show. The odds are seemingly against her as she battles with top chefs when she had no professional culinary experience.
The competition changes her life in more ways than she anticipated, giving her a second shot at love while facing the demons of her past.
The film features Tendainashe Chitima, Jessesi Mungoshi and popular rapper Tendai Nguni aka Tehn Diamond.
“Cook Off” has been shown at various festivals, including ZIFF (2018), Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) 2018, the prestigious IFFR, where it became the first local film to be shown there in 22 years.
In July last year, the film premiered in London at Mayfair Hotel.
Brickhill said the film would soon be released on online platforms, including iTunes, Amazon and My Movies Africa for world-wide consumption.