Female producer eyes to promote womens rights through filmmaking

Lilongwe based female producer, Cathreen Star Mlenga has set for herself a mission to promote womens rights by producing movies that advocate messages aimed at exposing and addressing challenges affecting women and young girls in the country.

In an interview, Mlenga said that she decided to embark on the development after experiencing the challenges which women and young girls face in their daily life.

“As a woman I know how it feels to be looked down and not to be supported, hence I decided to start producing movies which have stories that would inspire my fellow women and young girls to fight for their rights,” Mlenga said.

She added that, through her mission she also envisions to tell success stories of women in order to motivate women and young girls to start believing in themselves and realize their potential.

“Through my movies, I have the vision to be telling success stories of women in order to fight the stereotypes that come with gender, I want also to create and celebrate heroines so as to inspire young women and girls to be strong and confident,” she said.

Catherine Mlenga filmmaker
Mlenga captured during her work

Currently the producer is working to premier her new movie titled Sowing Seeds on July 3, 2021 at Golden Peacock Hotel in Lilongwe and on July 31, 2021 at Bingu Inter1 Convention Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe.

According to Mlenga, the upcoming movie is a success story of a young lady known as Nthanda who got married off to her teenage boyfriend.

“The movie Sowing Seeds is a success story of a young lady Nthanda who got married off to her teenage boyfriend, we saw the struggle which the couple went through and how they pulled through and changed their misery to a success story,” she explained.

To come up with the movie, Mlenga said she was inspired by the death of her friend who died at the age of 16 while giving birth and also the works of Senior Chief Kachindamoto of Dedza in ending early marriages in her area.

Through the movie, the 25 year old producer said that she wants to positively influence mindset change and promote efforts in social behavior communication change on early marriages and unwanted pregnancies among youth particularly girls.

In her remarks, one of the countrys feminists and the founder of the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that supports girls known as Foundation for Girls Leadership, Memory Banda said that Mlengas idea would assist to expose the challenges that women and young girls are facing in the country.

“It is quite interesting that Cathreen has decided to rewrite stories about women and young girls in moving images, I can see that the her idea will help to expose the challenges that are affecting women and girls in our country.

“In addition the idea will assist to raise an alarm so that relevant authorities like NGOs and the government should work on the challenges affecting women and young girls by bringing best solutions to the challenges,” Banda said. 

In his comment, Film Association of Malawi (FAMA) President, Ezaius Mkandawire hailed Mlenga for her passion in film production saying that it would help to grow countrys film industry.

“As an association we are happy with the passion which Cathreen have in as far as filmmaking is concerned, we are hoping that her productions would assist to grow the film industry in the country and put it on inter1 map,” Mkandawire said.