Zimbabwe’s Award-winning Comedy Movie ‘Cook-Off’ Becomes Netflix’s First Independent Acquisition

Cook Off is an award-winning comedy movie from African country Zimbabwe, the comedy film was written and directed by Tomas Brickhill alongside Joe Njagu for production. It features Tendaishe Chitima, Jessesi Mungoshi, Eddie Sandifolo, Chirikure Chirikure, and popular rapper ‘Tehn Diamond’ or Tendai Nguni.

Telling the story of Anesu, a struggling single mother from a Harare township with a flair for cooking. However, after she qualifies for Zimbabwe’s top reality cooking show, she finds herself not only battling against professional chefs but her own self-doubt. Since its international premiere at the prestigious Rotterdam International Film Festival (IFFR) back in 2018, Cook Off has screened at over fifteen film festivals worldwide, gone on to win several awards and will now be coming to streaming giant Netflix as their first acquisition from Zimbabwe.

We have always wanted the film to do as well as possible, but without our modest resources, we had much more humble expectations of how far we could take this film. It’s a real testament to the hard work of the entire team that we have managed to go this far.

Brickhill, who wrote and directed the movies, said.

Speaking to OkayAfrica about having been cast in the lead role, Chitima (who plays Anesu) says, “When I first read Cook-off I thought to myself ‘wow, what a unique story, what an intriguing story’.” Chitima goes on to add that, “We haven’t had a lot of Zimbabwean stories told in that way. The writing was brilliant, it was funny, there was a bit of drama, there was tension. The writing really encapsulated all kinds of themes and different genres altogether. I was really excited about the script and actually that’s what really drew me to the role.”

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