Queen of Katwe took over Hollywood Blvd this week with a tribute to the film and its fabulous cast of stars. Disney’s Queen of Katwe tells the story of Ugandan girl, Phiona Mutsei, whose journey has been filled with struggles and success. Phiona grew up in a slum in Kampala called Katwe where she met Coach Katende and his chess group. Seeing her living conditions in the movie made me put my own life into perspective but it also brought me great joy to see a beautiful child blossom from such conditions into a heroine. As much as a child from the slums could, Phiona put her family first as she discovered her passion for the game that changed her world. That old saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child” and director Mira Nair did an extraordinary job expressing that message in this movie.
I was honored to be a part of this rich, inspirational experience. Academy Award winner, Lupita Nyong’o (plays Phiona’s mom, Harriet), David Oyelowo (stars as “Coach” Robert Katende) and new-comer Medina Nalwanga (plays Phiona), as well as their real life inspirations graced the red carpet at the premiere held at the legendary El Capitan Theatre. I was impressed by the colorful fashion and excitement that radiated throughout the event. Lupita looked gorgeous in lilac and headdress while David Oyelowo and his family coordinated their outfits! I read that his suit was designed by Dolce & Gabbana.
There’s always so much energy while watching a premiere! How could I ever see a movie again without the cast and creators, their friends and family, and supporters in the audience? Everyone cheers, laughs and cries together as a community and believe me, you will root for Phiona and her family. Queen of Katwe is a wonderful movie and I suggest seeing it with your family. I’m taking my 9 year-old daughter to see it when it comes out.
The after-party was held at the Hard Rock Cafe and it was jamming! Medina Nalwanga started a dance-off with the other teenagers who showed us their awesome moves! Lupita, Mira and other guests joined in on the fun. I’ll never forget that night. I danced with Lupita Nyong’o!
Disney’s Queen of Katwe opens for a limited release on Friday, September 23 followed by a nationwide release on September 30.
Featured image and photo of Lupita and David are courtesy of Disney.