By Ahmad Muto
Film director, writer, still and motion graphics artist Loukman Ali has revealed plans to turn his latest project, the rather suggestive Sixteen rounds short film into a feature film and charge $5 per view. This was after the 37-minute short film featuring actress Natasha Sinayobye and Michael Wawuyo Jr. notched over 100,000 views on YouTube in just two weeks.
The film revolves around the two characters and their messy love life characterised by infidelity on Sinayobye’s part and symptoms akin to Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) on Wawuyo’s. Acting as a man hardened by the battlefield and accustomed to the smell of blood, the film is set up in a small house he shares with his wife who has a side guy. Wawuyo steps out, this ‘assistant’ shows to take his wife on a ride, who later reciprocates with a ride in their marital bed.
Remember the gas mask from Loukman’s The girl in the yellow jumper film of 2020? Well, it makes an appearance as Wawuyo lays a trap under the bed to gather evidence on his wife’s infidelity, just moments after speaking to Louis about the option in their divorce that will see Sinayobye walk out with only her seductive pink dress, hair comb, pair of bras and that snitch of a doll in their bedroom.
Speaking to The Kampala Sun about turning it into a feature film, he said he intends to make it longer so that he can be able to charge for it and also make the ending more convincing.
“I am making a feature version of it. I will just be adding on this one. The way it ends is not very conclusive. It can work the way it is, but there is room for expansion. I can expand on the characters, but mostly it will be about the two,” he explained.
On why he has decided not to make the short film free, he said his colleagues have been asking him about how he benefits from all the effort he puts in. Lessons he learnt from working in advertising about product and public awareness come in handy – Ali says there is no product if they do not know about it so he has been cultivating a base of consumers of his art.
“I have been doing short films and most film makers have been asking me about how I benefit. I spent most of my adult life working in advertising. And I know you do not have a product if people do not know it,” he noted.
“So, all the short films I have been doing have been to get viewership, people looking forward to our next product. If they have the data to watch it online then it means they can afford to pay at least sh20k to watch it if it came out in the cinema. The goal is to charge them, but I want to do so when they are willing to pay for something worth their money,” he explained.
Loukman also noted that he will be adding on this particular one to cut costs because according to him, starting from scratch will consume more resources, but adding 40 minutes on to the already existing one to make it a feature film will make it easy. He will then charge for it and also be able to qualify for awards.