By Elizabeth Willoughby on
The film is the true life story of Kassim Ouma, the seventh of thirteen children in his Ugandan family, who was abducted at age six along with a class of school children by the National Resistance Army, the rebel gorilla force that took governmental control through a coupe d’etat in 1986. Forced to fight as a soldier, Ouma also joined the army’s boxing club, and excelled. Fourteen years later he was able to obtain a visa to the US for a military boxing tournament and took advantage of the opportunity to defect, an act that cost his father his life but led to Ouma’s world title and a chance to help back home.
Today Ouma still fights professionally, but he also advocates for the plight of the 300 thousand child soldiers around the world today: “My heart is into working with my African people, working with the UN, helping my people in Africa as much as I can.”
Whitaker’s screening should also help – proceeds will go to Hope North, a refuge for orphans and escaped child soldiers in northern Uganda that provides schooling and training to rebuild their lives. The $25 tickets include the 29 January movie screening with VIP seating at ArcLight Cinemas in Los Angeles, and a cocktail reception and question and answer period afterwards.
“There are a lot of groups out there really helping, like ONE Campaign," Ouma told New York Magazine. "Celebrities like Oprah and Madonna have gotten involved in African problems. It’s all part of the same issue, the same fight."
Copyright © 2009 Look to the Stars