BOBI WINE: THE PEOPLE’S PRESIDENT, is documentary feature film about Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, famously known as Bobi Wine, who is a musician turned politician who is the current leader of the National Unity Platform (NUP) and the People Power MovementBorn in the slums of Kampala. Bobi Wine risks his life and the lives of his wife, Barbie, and their children to fight the ruthless regime led by Yoweri Museveni. Museveni has been in power since 1986 and changed Uganda’s constitution to enable him to run for yet another five-year term.
Running in the country’s 2021 presidential elections, Bobi Wine uses his music to denounce the dictatorial regime and support his life mission to defend the oppressed and the voiceless people of Uganda. In this fight, he must also take on the country’s police and military, which are not afraid to use violence and torture in a vain attempt to intimidate and silence him and his supporters.
Here is our video interview with Moses Bwayo Christopher Sharp, co-directors of BOBI WINE: THE PEOPLE’S PRESIDENT.
Director Christopher Sharp
Christopher Sharp was born in Uganda and has a deep appreciation for the country’s people, culture and extraordinary natural beauty. He spent his early working life as a film editor in London and more recently has revisited the profession as director of ‘Bobi Wine: The People’s President’.
He met Bobi and Barbie in 2017 and was inspired by their courage. Christopher believed in their extraordinary capacity to enact change, and instantly knew that their enormous sacrifice and resilience needed to be documented.
He worked closely with a number of talented individuals, including Editor Paul Carlin, as well as acclaimed Producer John Battsek, Co-Director Moses Bwayo, and other inspirational cinematographers. Collectively they have made a film which he hopes gives courage to all those who struggle under oppressive regimes.
Director Moses Bwayo
Moses Bwayo is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker known for shooting and co-directing the award-winning feature documentary “Bobi Wine: The People’s President” (2023). Born in the village of Bududa on the slopes of Mount Elgon in eastern Uganda, Moses was introduced to filmmaking by peeking through cracks in the walls of local kibandas, bootleg movie theatres housed in wooden shacks. Wrapt in the exciting camerawork and storytelling of Hollywood’s martial arts films, Moses immediately fell in love with cinema.
At 19, he moved to the capital of Uganda, got a job as a portrait photographer, and began studying at Kampala University. In 2013, he graduated with honors with his Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communication. Moses went on to earn a postgraduate diploma at Kampala Film School, the nation’s top film and television conservatory, and started working as a production sound recordist and cinematographer.
His life changed when he met Oscar®-nominated director Mira Nair, who was facilitating a workshop for aspiring filmmakers at her Maisha Film Labs. He was chosen as a boom operator on Nair’s short documentary “A Fork, a Spoon and a Knight” (2014). Subsequently, Nair took Moses under her wing and mentored him for two years, during which he performed sundry jobs for Disney’s “Queen of Katwe” (2016), travelling to the United States for the first time for the final mix with Nair in New York.
In 2016, Moses started his own production company in Kampala, Jajja Productions, where he oversaw production and post-production services on various commercial, documentary, and feature films. Moses’ reputation as a courageous verité cinematographer and local fixer began to grow, shooting for ABC, BBC, and VICE News for their Uganda-based productions.
In late 2017 His life changed again when he began work on the feature documentary “Bobi Wine: The People’s President.” Working closely with co-director and producer Christopher, Moses spent five harrowing years following Bobi Wine, a pop star turned politician who ran for president opposing Yoweri Museveni, a dictator who has been in power since 1986. During the production, Moses was arrested, imprisoned, and shot in the face at close range while filming. Two-time Oscar winner John Battsek also produced the film. With mounting threats to him and his family for making the film, Moses fled Uganda to the United States.
“Bobi Wine: The People’s President” premiered to a 10-minute standing ovation at the 2022 Venice Film Festival in September 2022, where it sold to National Geographic before making its U.S. premiere at the 2022 Telluride Film Festival. The film won the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 2022 Hamptons International Film Festival.