Jeune Pousse: A cinematic masterpiece uniting diverse realms through art and sports

A scene in a movie shot and directed by French filmaker Christopher Tourneur

SPORTS FILM Jeune Pousse: A cinematic masterpiece uniting diverse realms through art and sports

Clive Kyazze 14:56 - 25.09.2023

In the ever-evolving realm of filmmaking, two remarkable visionaries, Mercy Twinomujuni and Christopher Tourneur, have embarked on a groundbreaking cinematic endeavour known as “Jeune Pousse.”

This cinematic odyssey transcends geographical boundaries, uniting Uganda and France through the captivating art of storytelling.

“Jeune Pousse” unfolds its captivating narrative against the backdrop of Uganda’s mystical Virunga volcanoes in Kisoro before transitioning to the vibrant Kitintale Skatepark and basketball courts in Kampala.

At its core lies the enigmatic spy, on a singular mission to discover young talents and unravel the mysterious puzzles scattered across Uganda’s diverse landscape.

A French spy is searching for young skateboarders in Uganda," Mercy Twinomujuni told Pulse Sports before adding. "She arrives in a helicopter which lands in Kisoro, in the middle of gorillas and the Virunga mountains." 

"She must find a way to reach Kitintale, where the girls practice skateboarding. She will have to overcome several adventures along the way, but ultimately, she finds the girls," she added.

This reporter later learnt that the aim is to showcase the intrinsic beauty and lush nature of Uganda, along with its rich culture and burgeoning sports scene

Ugandan filmmaker Mercy Twinomujuni (R) and Christopher Tourneur (L) during a brainstorm session

In a few years, the best skaters in the world will come from Uganda," Tourneur told this reporter before adding, "If your dreams don't scare you, they are not big enough. My inspiration is meeting people who grew up in different countries but have a lot in common." 

Twinomujuni, a gifted Ugandan filmmaker, first gained recognition on the international stage when she presented her work at the prestigious SLPAL Film Festival in France in 2022.

At this eventful gathering, destiny brought her into the orbit of Tourneur and a cohort of emerging filmmakers hailing from across the globe.

While stimulating conversations and the cross-pollination of ideas, “Jeune Pousse” seeds were sown, a project that would transcend borders and cultures.

French actress Reshma Mohamed will play The Spy in an upcoming movie that will feature Uganda and French actors

In May of the subsequent year, Twinomujuni embarked on a transformative journey to France, armed with a multifaceted agenda: refining the film’s pitch, securing essential funding, cultivating vital networks with stakeholders, and exploring the sports facilities integral to their cinematic tapestry.

Collaborating closely with Tourneur, they conducted inspirational film workshops and engaged with esteemed educational institutions.

They shared their ambitious project with influential figures, including French politician Jean Claude Mairal, a distinguished SLPAL Film Festival committee member.

Christopher Tourneur (R) pose for a photo with members of his cast during a shoot

Tourneur, a filmmaker with an unwavering passion for cultural exchange, had initially crossed paths with Mercy at the school Cavilam in Vichy, France.

Their connection bore fruit in the form of Twinomujuni’s invitation to the 2022 festival, where their shared vision began to take shape – a cultural bridge between France and Uganda, with a profound focus on themes such as skateboarding and women’s empowerment in sports.

The heartbeat of “Jeune Pousse” resonates with a shared vision and a profound sense of purpose. Filming will commence in the heart of Uganda in January 2024, capturing the essence of both nations.

Mercy Twinomujuni (L) and Christopher Tourneur (R) during the former's recent visit in France

This dual narrative is a powerful testament to the unexpected parallels between their distinct cultures.

The culmination of this ambitious endeavour will yield two distinct films destined to grace cinema screens and university auditoriums in France and Uganda, fostering unity among individuals of diverse backgrounds.

These films will also be showcased at esteemed international film festivals, spreading their message of inspiration and the intrinsic beauty found in the uncharted territories of culture and human potential.

“Jeune Pousse” is not merely a project but a promise, a testament to the remarkable power of storytelling – the ability to connect, inspire, and unveil the marvels hidden within the unexplored realm of culture and human potential.