Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Taking Nollywood to the next level

The most famous Nollywood star Genevieve Nnaji

Taking Nollywood to the next level

Recently stakeholders in the Nigerian film industry met at the last quarterly stampede of the Committee for Relevant Art (CORA) to discuss “The New Trend in Nollywood”. The event was held on Sunday May 22, 2011, at the Freedom Park on Broad Street, Lagos. The forum was convened by CORA and Mr. Femi Odugbemi’s iRepresent International Documentary Film Festival (iREP).

It was well coordinated and well attended by most of the notable personalities in Nollywood and related fields. Celebrated actors Richard Mofe-Damijo, Joke Silva-Jacobs, Francis Onwochei and other Nollywood stars sat quietly without any sort of fanfare or glamour in the audience.

The invited filmmakers identified as leaders of the new trend had an interactive session on their movies. Mahmood Ali-Balogun discussed his matrimonial drama “Tango With Me”, Kunle Afolayan spoke on his horror thriller “The Figurine 'araromire'”, Stephanie Okerereke on her romantic comedy “Through the Glass”, Chidi Nwokobia on his family drama “Champions Of Our Time”, Emem Isong said she is excited about the successes she has made screening her videos in cinemas, Lilian Amah-Aluko had more to address than her “Jungle Ride”, Vivian Ejike talked about the challenges of making her “Private Storm”, appreciating the local talents and professionals she found worthy in making good movies, but Chineze Anyaene was absent and the young man Kelechi Ikata she sent to represent her could not say much on her outstanding thriller “IJE - The Journey”.

The filmmakers, journalists and other contributors had a common resolution that with the provision of adequate resources by all the stakeholders and a conducive environment the Nigerian film industry will make more impact in the world.

The moderator was the notable film critic and journalist Steve Ayorinde who is now the Managing Editor of The National Mirror Newspaper. The coordinators Shaibu Husseini and his senior colleague Jahman Anikulapo, Editor of The Guardian on Sunday Nespaper and Programme Chairman of CORA deserve commendation for making sure that the event went well and recognizing the presence of Mr. Hope Obioma Opara, the Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of Supple magazine and President of Eko International Film Festival and Chike Ibekwe whose movie “Eternal” was a co-winner of the Golden Screen Best Film award with “An Unusual Woman” by Burkinabe director Abdoulaye Dao at the 14th annual Ecrans noirs Film Festival in Yaounde, Cameroon, last year. And thanks to Toyin Akinosho, Secretary-General of CORA and Femi Odugbemi and their organizing committee for hosting the laudable forum.

~ By Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima

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