About the Festival

The Africa World Documentary Film Festival (AWDFF) is sponsored by the E. Desmond Lee Professorship in African/African American Studies, Studies International studies and Program, and University of Missouri-St. Louis.

The AWDFF has as its objective the promotion of knowledge and culture of the people of Africa, in a Pan-African context.

In promotion of the Pan African context, public viewings of submission accepted by AWDFF shall also occur in Africa, Europe and the Caribbean.

Though the AWDFF is non-competitive, prizes of $1,000 and $500 shall be awarded to two documentaries in Full-length and Short categories, respectively judged by the AWDFF committee as furthering understanding and contributing significantly to knowledge of the African World.

Director’s 2014 Festival Message


Welcome to the 7th E. Desmond Lee Africa World Documentary Film Festival (AWDFF), sponsored by the E. Desmond Lee Professorship in African/African-American Studies, International Studies and Programs at the University of Missouri, Saint Louis.

Through the art of documentary filmmaking, the AWDFF is committed to the promotion of knowledge, life and culture, of the people of Africa worldwide.   This year, in our seventh season, we shall be presenting 29 films submitted by filmmakers from Australia, Bolivia, Canada, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Ethiopia, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Grenada, Italy, Jamaica, Mali, Mozambique, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Portugal, Rwanda, Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic, South Africa, Tanzania, United Kingdom, Uganda, USA and Zimbabwe. 

We celebrate and congratulate the extraordinary group of talented filmmakers who have employed their craft and skills in the exploration of African subjects.  Some of the major subjects covered in these documentary films are Culture, Socio-Economic, Environment, History, Gender, Legal, Music & performing Arts, Religion, Politics, Sport as well as Human Rights issues.

Once again we are grateful to continue our important collaboration with our partners, the Missouri History Museum in Saint Louis; St. Louis University’s Sam and Marilyn Fox Atlas Week Program; the University of Kansas in Lawrence, MO; the Molefi Kete Asante Institute for Afrocentric Studies in Philadelphia, PA; the University of Yaoundé in Yaoundé, Cameroon; the IRep International Film Festival in Lagos, Nigeria;  the University of the Western Cape in Bellville, South Africa; the Universities of West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica and Cave Hill, Barbados; as well as “I Will Tell” International Film Festival in London, England. 

As always, my sincere appreciation goes to the International Studies and Programs, especially the Director, Dr. Joel Glassman and Mr. Ephrem Andemariam, the Coordinator of African/African American Studies and the film festival, and the University of Missouri South Africa Exchange Program (UMSAEP).

I would also like to express my sincere appreciation to the following individuals: Mr. MK Stalling and the staff at Missouri History Museum; Drs.’ Vince Casaregola, Joya Uraizee,  Michelle Lorenzini and Austin McIntire of St. Louis University;  Drs’ Molefi Asante and Ama Mazama of The Molefi Kete Asante Institute for Afrocentric Studies in Philadelphia; Drs.’ Daniel Atkinson and Elizabeth MacGonagle of the University of Kansas; Dr. Donatus Tandem - University of Yaoundé  in Cameroon; Mr. Lanre Olupona, Mr. Toyin; Dr. Leolyn Jackson of the University of the Western Cape in South Africa; Drs.’ Tunde Bewaji, Rachel Moseley-Wood and Franklyn St. Juste of the University of West Indies in Jamaica; Dr. Jane Bryce of the University of West Indies in Barbados; Ms. Jenny Lee  of “I Will Tell” International Film Festival in London, UK.

I wish you an enjoyable Festival

‘Niyi Coker, Jr.
E. Desmond Lee Professor
Festival Director