About

BIOGRAPHY

Kantarama is an award winning filmmaker.

She writes and directs films set in East Africa, Switzerland and the United States.

Her first feature film "Tapis Rouge" has been screened and awarded worldwide including TV5Monde Best Feature Film at Geneva International Film Festival (2014) and Best Directing at Chelsea Film Festival (New York) in 2015, followed by a national theatrical release in France, May 2017.

In 2018 she became one of the 5 residents for the 3rd Edition at "Realness - An African Screenwriter's Residency" selected after evaluation of more than 130 projects from the whole continent. Following the residency, Kantarama was invited as a delegate to the Atlas Workshops (Marrakech International Film Festival) in December 2018.

The other films she directed garnered praise and won awards internationally. Including: 2 seasons of the short TV series Me+U, a comedy she created and directed. And the short video Pinot In The Grass which won the Award of Merit – Special Mention at Los Angeles IndieFEST 2014.

Since 2014, she also teaches directing, writing & producing workshops to help younger artists implement their work (in Rwanda, Brazil, Switzerland, Tunisia, Kenya, Tanzania and Malaysia).

In 2004, Kantarama was the recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship and a Swiss Benevolent Scholarship.

As a freelance producer, she has been working on various films, TV and commercials in Uganda, Rwanda and the United States. 

She’s a dreamer, a storyteller and an explorer. She spends her free time traveling around the world and if she’s not busy making a new film, she is probably spending time befriending a lion or collecting seashells somewhere in the wild.

 

 

Kantarama Gahigiri @ IMDB

Her recent achievements as a director include

TAPIS ROUGE

A feature length film that she co-directed and co-wrote in Switzerland.

WINNER OF 5 AWARDS

TV5 Monde Best French Speaking Feature Film Award at Geneva International Film Festival 2014.

Festival Grand Prix and Outstanding Ensemble Cast Award at Nador Film Festival 2015.

Audience Choice Award at Delémont-Hollywood FF 2015

Best Directing Award at Chelsea FF New York 2015

Foundation Award 2016 (Fondation Suzanne Huber)

Festival Award at Festival Effervescence, France 2016

Me+U

Two seasons of a short TV Series that she directed and co-wrote in New York City.

WINNER OF 6 AWARDS

Best Director Award at LAWEBFEST 2014

Best Web Series at Los Angeles Comedy Festival 2013

Audience Choice Award at IFFCA 2013

Outstanding Ensemble Cast Award, Outstanding Producing Award at LAWEBFEST 2013 & Outstanding Theme Song Award at LAWEBFEST 2014.

Directing Awards

In 2014 she received the prestigious Award of Merit – Special Mention at IndieFEST Los Angeles for her directorial work on the music video PINOT IN THE GRASS.

That same year she received the Best Director Award at LAWEBFEST 2014 for her directorial work on the TV series Me+U.

In 2015 she received the Festival Grand Prix at Nador International Film Festival and the Best Directing Award at Chelsea Film Festival, New York for her directorial work on the feature film TAPIS ROUGE.

In 2016 she received the Festival Award at Festival Effervescence for TAPIS ROUGE and the Foundation Award 2016 (FSHuber) for her directorial work on TAPIS ROUGE (part 1) and the western A L'WEST (part 2).

 In 2017 IndieFEST Los Angeles gives her a second Award of Merit for her directorial work on LOST ANGEL LESS. 

Her production experience include

Set work for studio movies , television shows & independent movies:

  • MEN IN BLACK 3
  • PERSON OF INTEREST
  • CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM
  • SUITS
  • PORTLANDIA
  • SAVANNAH
  • SILENT HOUSE
  • GENERATION UM…
  • PHOEBE IN WONDERLAND

Producer work for independent movies

  • THE GIRL IN THE YELLOW JUMPER
  • MERCY OF THE JUNGLE
  • BE THE MONSTER
  • KISMET

Production Managing of music videos, commercials, reality TV and documentaries.

HONORS & AWARDS

Kantarama Gahigiri
  • Award of Merit (IndieFEST Film Awards Los Angeles) - February 2017
  • Best Animated Short Award (Berlin Independent Film Festival) - February 2017
  • Festival Award (Festival Effervescence, France) - October 2016
  • Foundation Award 2016 (Fondation Suzanne Huber / SGUP / LODH) - May 2016
  • Best Directing Award (Chelsea Film Festival New York) - October 2015
  • Audience Choice Award (DelĂ©mont-Hollywood Film Festival) - September 2015
  • Festival Grand Prix (Nador Film Festival) - May 2015
  • Outstanding Ensemble Cast Award (Nador Film Festival) - May 2015
  • Best Music Video Award (Berlin Independent Film Festival) - February 2015
  • Nominated for Audience Choice Award (Solothurner Film Festival) - January 2015
  • Award of Merit - Special Mention (IndieFEST Film Awards Los Angeles) - November 2014
  • TV5Monde Best French Speaking Feature Film Award (Geneva International Film Festival) - November 2014
  • Best Directing Award (LAWEBFEST) - April 2014
  • Outstanding Theme Song Award (LAWEBFEST) - April 2014
  • Best Web Series Award (Los Angeles Comedy Festival) - December 2013
  • Audience Choice Award (International Film Festival of Cinematic Arts) - November 2013
  • Outstanding Ensemble Cast Award (LAWEBFEST) - April 2013
  • Outstanding Producing Award (LAWEBFEST) - April 2013
  • Nominated for Best Female Filmmaker Award (West Chester Film Festival) - April 2012
  • Nominated for Best Swiss Film (Lucerne International Film Festival) - October 2011
  • John J. Theobald Graduate Achievement Award (New York Institute of Technology) - June 2006
  • Swiss Benevolent Scholarship (Swiss Benevolent Society of New York) - June 2004
  • Fulbright Scholarship - June 2004

Studies

  • 2006 MA in Communication and Film from New York Institute of Technology.
  • 2001 MA in International Relations from Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, (IUHEI) Geneva.