These are the women who are creating waves – and surfing them – across the various entertainment sectors in Africa and beyond. Through all the challenges the last few years have brought, they have shown their mettle, rising to the top of their professions and living their exceptional talents out loud.
Here’s who made it into Fame Week Africa’s Top 10 Women in Entertainment, alphabetically and by sector:
Film and Television
Ayten Amin, film director – Egypt
Ayten Amin's first short film, Her Man, won several national prizes. In 2013, her debut feature film, Villa 69, received the Special Jury Award for Arab Film at Abu Dhabi Film, the Cairo Film Connection Award for Best Film and the Hubert Bals Award at Durban Film Mart. She also co-directed the documentary Tahrir 2011, selected at the Venice International Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival and nominated for Best Documentary in Cinema For Peace award Berlin. In 2019, she directed 20 episodes of the hit drama Saabe Gaar (The Seventh Neighbour), a 70-episode TV series.
Camille Eden, VP of recruitment and talent development for Nickelodeon - America (animation)
Camille Eden calls herself a “collaborative leader who specialises in recruitment and talent acquisition, outreach and talent development”. She says she enjoys working with creatives at all levels to help them achieve their goals. Her work includes being one of 54 black animation professionals who recreated the iconic Great Day in Harlem with Nickelodeon.
Dorothy Ghettuba, director of Africa originals at Netflix – Kenya
Dorothy Ghettuba is a Kenyan film and TV entrepreneur and currently the director, original series for Africa at Netflix. She is a co-founder of the Nairobi-based Spielworks Media, an African production company launched in 2009. In 2016, she was named among C. Hub magazine's 100 most influential creative personalities. Dorothy is also a 2016 Archbishop Tutu Fellow with the African Leadership Institute.
Nomsa Philiso, executive head of programming general entertainment at M-Net – South Africa
Nomsa Philiso is the executive head of programming at general entertainment, M-Net. She has extensive broadcast and media experience spanning over 25 years in media sales, channel and content management, technology project implementation, and general management.
Mehret Mandefro, co-founder of Realness Institute and filmmaker – Ethiopia and America
Born in Addis Ababa, Mehret Mandefro was one of the 2009 honorees in the Black Girls Rock Awards, receiving the Community Service Award, and in 2014, she was one of the women honoured in the International Women's Day Celebration in New York City, by WomenWerk. The same year she co-produced the film, Difret, directed by Zeresenay Berhane Mehari. Mehret also co-executive produced a 2019 Zeresenay Berhane film titled, Sweetness in the Belly, and the documentary, The Loving Generation she co-directed and co-produced which was nominated for a Webby People's Voice Award.
Mimi Bartels, head of production of FilmOne Entertainment – Nigeria
Mimi Bartels' career includes more than nine years in content creation, film production and distribution. Her focus is on collaborative building of creative excellence to push Nigerian storytelling to its max. She is currently head of production (co-Head, FilmOne).
Antos Stella, managing director – content Connect Africa - South Africa
With a magnificent impact on South African music over 30 years, Antos Stella is a hugely respected businesswoman in the industry. Bridging the gap between creative and business, Antos has been part of some of South Africa's biggest international artist deals, and a leading content aggregator with a focus on telecommunications and digital distribution.
Domanique Grant, singer-songwriter – Canada
Singer, songwriter, creator and three-time award-winning entrepreneur, Domanique works with brands, thought leaders and media (TEDx, CTV, NBS) to “share what millennials really feel”. Her critically acclaimed EP album, Playhouse, has been performed on over half of the continents around the world and she is one of 20 artists out of 1,000 in Canada selected for the Socan TD Incubator recognising artists with high viability.
Namakau Star, singer - South Africa
In June 2022, Namakau Star launched her debut seven-track EP, Landing, through Paradise Sound Systems. Born in Johannesburg and now resident in Cape Town, Namakau Star has been noted for her influence in the alternative R&B and hip-hop scene, television appearances as well as commendations from different media outlets. In 2021 her music gained popularity through Apple Music’s curated playlists, the Queen of R&B segment on MTV Base.
XXC Legacy, artist and cross trainer ambassador – South Africa
Born Courtney Thandiswa Mthethwa, this noted young singer, rapper, theatrical performer, clarinetist, pianist and violinist has been dubbed a visionary for her achievements in the music and entertainment scene. Graduating from the National School of the Arts, where she studied music theory, learned piano and clarinet and participated in musical theatre productions.
"Fame Week Africa sees all of these exceptional women as winners, not only for their individual strengths and creativity, but for their collective impact on the world of entertainment,” says Martin Hiller, creative and content director for Fame Week Africa. “Join us at FWA’s Top 10 Women in Entertainment live and see exactly how these sisters are doing it.”
Fame Week Africa headlined by MIP Africa and Muziki Africa is the perfect platform for Africa to bring her stories and content to the world. Based on the tremendous success of Fame Week Africa 2021, industry professionals from around the continent and abroad will once again shine from 24–26 August 2022.
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