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Zanzibar Soccer Dreams

(2016, 52’- Co-directed with Catalin Brylla)



Zanzibar Soccer Dreams presents the dawn of an era for women’s football in Zanzibar. This film is a follow-up to the 2007 Zanzibar Soccer Queens which focused on Women Fighters Football Club, a team of strong-willed Muslim women determined to play soccer to better their lives. The women’s resistance to cultural norms has taken them beyond the borders of their country, and away from the confines of negative attitudes. When the players visited Potsdam, Germany, in 2009, this created a buzz and attitudes started to change. The once marginalised football “hooligans” are considered ‘cultural Ambassadors. As one player declares, “Men who used to say you are hooligans, have no more words left”. Muslim schoolgirls can now play soccer as part of their physical education, but despite limited football equipment and facilities, the girls cherish the freedom and the right to play. One schoolgirl reflects on how she “used to get irritated that only boys could play football.” Another girl expresses her delight and pride that “Something great has happened to girls.”

ZanziFestival Screenings

Festival Screening Highlights

Canadian Sport Film Festival – World Premiere & Closing Night Film – May 2016

Zanzibar International Film Festival – (ZIFF), July 2016 – Africa Premiere

Official Selection, Lisbon International Film Festival – 2016 Summer Edition

Arusha African Film Festival in St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda – Nov. 2016

Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series – New York – Oct. 2016

TrueDoc Documentary Festival, Ukraine – September 2016

Cambridge African Film Festival – Arts Picture House Cambridge – Oct. 2016

Watch-Africa: Wales African Film Festival. – Oct & Nov. 2016; Touring in Wales

Magic Lantern Cinema, Tywyn (Mid Wales – October 2016

Chaplaincy, University of South Wales – Black History Month, October 2016

Special Screening for the Swansea Ladies Football Club – November 2016

 The Pickle Factory, Bristol – Nov. 2016

King’s College London – 7th November 2016

Africa in Motion, Edinburgh and Glasgow – October & November 2016

Silver Theatre and Cultural Center – American Film Institute – Washington DC – March 2017

Deptford Cinema, London – August 2017

Women of The Lens Festival of Film, Digital and Broadcast – London – November 2017

Filmuniversität Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF, Germany – November 2017

International Documentary Festival of Ierapetra Awards, Greece – August 2018

Silicon Valley African Film Festival (SVAFF), San Jose, USA – October 2018

Lake International Pan African Film Festival, Nairobi, Kenya – November 2018

University of Ghana, Legon – Screened during the Africa Regional Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA), November 2018

Articles and Links



Zanzibar Soccer Dreams Trailer

ZanziPhoto Gallery

Photo Gallery


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