Thursday, 29 July 2010


Kenya’s oldest primary school student the late Kimani Maruge will be celebrated for his bravery and ambition in search for education.
A biographical film about the 84–year-old student dubbed the First Grader will be screened for the first time at the 67th Venice Film Festival that kicks on September 1 and runs through to September 11.
The movie, currently in post-production, features British and Kenyan movie stars.
The female lead is played by British actress Naomie Harris (Pirates of the Caribbean). She plays Jane Obinchu, Maruge’s teacher who got in trouble for allowing him to sit in class with the 6-year-old students.
Kenyan journalist and an actor Oliver Litondo, 62, plays Maruge, an octogenarian who did not let age stop him from taking advantage of the Free Primary School initiative to get the education he always wanted.
Other Kenyan actors cast in the film include John Sibi-Okumu (Chairman of Education), Comedian Dan 'Churchill' Ndambuki (DJ Masha), Lydia Gitachu (CNN Journalist), Mumbi Kaigwa (Education Secretary), Ainea Ojiambo (Education Officer), Abubakar Mwenda (Boie), Melvin Alusa (Mr. Mutahi's Aide), Charles Ouda (Adult School Teacher), Gilbert K. Lukalia (Mr. Mutahi, a Politician) and KTN News anchor Michael Oyier (Newsreader).
In addition to the Venice premiere, First Grader has already been accepted for the London Film Festival in November.