Queen of Katwe (Uganda: 2016)


Mira Nair

Cast list

Madina Nalwanga as Phiona Mutesi

David Oyelowo as Robert Katende

Lupita Nyong'o as Nakku Harriet

Martin Kabanza as Mugabi Brian

Taryn "Kay" Kyaze as Night, Phiona's older sister

Ronald Ssemaganda as Ivan

Ethan Nazario Lubega as Benjamin

Nikita Waligwa as Gloria

Edgar Kanyike as Joseph

Esther Tebandeke as Sara Katende

Peter Odeke as Mr. Barumba

Sheebah Karungi as Shakira


Screenwriters: William Wheeler

Producers: John Carls, Lydia Dean Pilcher

Director of Cinematography: Sean Bobbitt

Editor: Barry Alexander Brown

Music: Alex Heffes


Based on the life of Phiona Mutesi, a young girl’s life in in Katwe, a slum in Kampala, Uganda is changed when she meets Robert Katende. Katende teaches the children how to play chess. Curious, Phiona gradually learns the game. Soon, she becomes captivated by it and becomes one of the top chess players in her area. Chess emerges a possible means of escape from Katwe for Phiona and her family.


Scott, A.O. “Review: In ‘Queen of Katwe,’ a Pawn Finds Her Crown Through Chess.The New York Times (online publication).

Linden, Sheri. “‘Queen of Katwe': Film Review.” Hollywood Reporter (online magazine).

Grierson, Tim. “‘Queen of Katwe’: Toronto Review.” Screen International (online publication).

Singh, Amardeep. “Where do you Belong: Returning to Uganda in Katwe.” The Films of Mira Nair: Diaspora Vérité.  Univ. Press of Mississippi, 2018.

Harris, Heather. “Queen Phiona and Princess Shuri—Alternative Africana ‘Royalty’ in Disney’s Royal Realm: An Intersectional Analysis.” Social Sciences 7.10 (2018): 206.

Other movies from Uganda made in

Title Country Year Director More infos
Queen of Katwe Uganda 2016 Mira Nair
The Pearl of Africa Kenya, Uganda 2016 Jonny von Wallström
Sorry, there's no movie with the same year.