The selection for the first batch of students to join the new government film school end of May is underway at the Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani.
Film Services Department Head Ernest Kerich said that the recruitment will focus on talents rather than academic qualifications.
“The school will be located at the Kasarani stadium facility where five rooms have been identified. The first class will have 20 students and they will be accommodated in three rooms, the others will be for administration and training,” said Mr Kerich. “We are in the process of procuring film equipment, vehicles and furniture for the school.”
Culture, Arts and Sports PS Richard Ekai said the film school will use talent as the basis of admission.
“We want to groom people with talents and passion, people from disadvantaged areas like Kibera and not necessarily people who have achieved a certain education grade,” he said.
In its campaign manifesto, the Jubilee administration pledged to increase opportunities for art, theater and film.
Higher learning institutions in the country do not adequately provide opportunities in the film industry. The move to open the film school comes at a time when digital TV requirements demand that local television station air 40 percent local content.
Mr Ekai noted that a few universities and private institutions offer filming courses and private education in film training is expensive and inaccessible to majority of Kenyans.
Mr Gilbert Lukalia, the Director of Strength of a Woman Movie, which bagged several Kalasha Awards last year, welcomed the move to establish a film school.
Mr Lukalia, however, said only a few people would get opportunities in such a school and thus the need to invest heavily in the sector to train many role artistes. Kalasha Awards is the brainchild of the Kenya Film Commission, a government parastatal that champions the growth of the film industry in the country.
“It should start right from the basic level incorporating acting and other talents into the curriculum as it happens in Nigeria, the United States and Europe. They train their young ones as they grow. It is not just about talent but also about nurturing,” Lukalia said.
Once the school is well established, more campuses will be set in several other counties, Mr Kerich said.