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‘Da Yie’ and the rising success of Anthony Nti: from the RITCS to the Oscars


March 15th: Mark the date in your calendar because that’s the day when we will know if ‘Da Yie’ has officially been nominated for the Oscars. The short film by Antwerp-based director Anthony Nti is on a winning spree, and it just keeps going.

Nti graduated from film school in 2019 with ‘Da Yie’, which soon earned him the big prize at Clermont-Ferrand. For those who are not familiar with the film festival: it’s a big deal in the realm of short films - like, really big. This year, Anthony returned to the festival, not as a nominee but as a member of the jury. Talk about evolution. In the past few weeks, the young director’s career has accelerated at an incredible pace. After winning an Ensor barely a month ago, ‘Da Yie’ has now been shortlisted for the Oscar for ‘Best Live Action Short Film’.

We recently had the pleasure of chatting with Anthony in our IG live, where he talked about ‘Da Yie’, his previous work, and life as a young filmmaker.

Article by Ioni Villanueva.

‘DA YIE’, GHANA AND THE IMPORTANCE OF FAMILY

But let’s rewind for a bit and give some background for those who haven’t seen the film yet (shame on you, go watch it). The film follows ‘Bogah’, a foreigner sent to Ghana to recruit children for a risky job. After spending some time with Prince and Mathilda, the unlucky ‘chosen ones’, Bogah starts second-guessing his decisions.

‘Da Yie’ or ‘Good night’ in English, was fully shot in Nti’s birth country of Ghana, which made for some stunning beachside scenes. What makes the film so special? Both cast and crew were made up of friends and family. Chingiz Karibekov, a close friend and fellow RITCS graduate, joined the crew as co-writer and co-producer. The two RITCS alumni have worked together numerous times, making them perfectly attuned to each other. This definitely shows in the final result.

Watch the trailer to get a taste of the vibe. To watch the whole thing, head over to Vimeo.

PREVIOUS WORK

If there's one word that doesn't describe Nti, it's one-dimensional. You might remember the videos for SLM’s ‘Ewa Ja’ or TheColorGrey’s ‘Swerve’. These were both directed by Anthony, along with many more of TheColorGrey’s music video’s.

After his work in the music industry, Nti can also cross TV productions off his bucket list. In January the four-episode series ‘De Shaq’ aired on Flemish broadcasting channel één. Besides the culturally diverse crew - not a given in the Belgian media landscape - the show also featured actors of color. Props to Prince K. Appiah as ‘Shaq’. A Belgian TV show with a person of color as the lead was considered historic in our country. These kinds of milestones are bittersweet. Yes, it’s a great step forward in terms of more inclusive media, but also kind of insane that we had to wait until 2021 for it to happen. Let’s hope inclusivity doesn’t end with Shaq.

In conclusion: Anthony Nti is a gift that just keeps giving, and we can’t wait to see what’s next. Get that Oscar!



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