“The Indian audience best understand the importance of music in films,” said renowned musician, Wasis Diop, who is representing his late brother Djibril Diop Mambety at the 16 international Film Festival of Kerala. Eight films of Mambety are being screened under the retrospective section.

“When we started out to make films, there was no existing Senegalese cinema to look up to. It was through the Hindi films that I and my brother discovered the love for cinema,” Diop said. He was speaking at ‘In Conversation’ with June Givanni, programmer from United Kingdom. He added that the Indian cinema was always about dreams and fantasies.

About his brother’s films, he said “His films were dynamic and young. They subverted conventions. They marked the beginning of modern African cinema.”

“I see the childhood of Djibril in his films, which was a life between joy and pain,” he said. He added that the reality of childhood in Africa was a hard one because of the polygamous marriage system.

Wasis Diop has acted in and written scores for many of Mambety’s films, including Contras City, Badou Boy, Hyenas and The Little Girl Who Sold Sunshine. “My brother needed my help to make films from the beginning. We used to make up excuses to get me out of school so that we could work on his films,” he said.

Mr. Diop also said that his next film would look back at what Africa had achieved since independence. “It will be an unconventional documentary,” he said.