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OSCARS APPROVES NIGERIAN COMMITTEE FOR SCREENING OF NOLLYWOOD FILMS

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Ahead of the 2015 Oscars, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), has approved a twelve-man committee of Nollywood stakeholders, the Nigerian Oscars Selection Committee (NOSC), paving the way for Nigerian entries to be considered for the world’s most prestigious prizes for films.

Each year, countries with an approved selection committee may submit one film for consideration for the Foreign Language Film Award Oscar; only 5 films are chosen from all international submissions for Academy members to cast their votes and choose a winning foreign language film.

“This is a great opportunity for Nigeria to have a voice in the international film arena”, said Chineze Anyaene, filmmaker and committee chairperson.

The NOSC comprises twelve outstanding professionals who have over time proved their mettle as some of the finest in the movie industry and will select one Nollywood movie each year to be submitted for the Oscars. They include Chineze Anyaene, Ngozi Okafor, Olumide Amure, Ramsey Nouah, Kene Mkparu, Emeka Mba, Chioma Ude, Akin Salami, Mildred Okwo, Biola Alabi, Charles Novia and Shaibu Husseini.

According to Academy rules, the members will consider submissions on seven criteria, which are: story, direction, acting, cinematography, sound, music and universal theme.

Shuiabu Husseini, another member of the board agrees. “The Nollywood film industry needs to play globally so people begin to look towards us.”

Every Nollywood movie selected each year will compete with movies from eighty-five (85) other countries for the coveted Best Foreign Language Film Award. Academy members will then pick a shortlist of five foreign language pictures ahead of the awards ceremony.

The approval of NOSC represents a milestone for the nation’s movie industry which has been recognized as one of the top largest movie industries globally. For years, stakeholders have been trying to further improve its standards and this represents a move in the right direction. Sooner or later, Nollywood movies will win – maybe consecutively even – the Oscar statuette for Best Foreign Language Picture.

ABOUT THE COMMITTEE MEMBERS

CHINEZE ANYAENE – CHAIRPERSON

Chineze Anyaene was born and raised in Abuja, Nigeria. She graduated from Regina Pacis College Abuja and later attended the university of Abuja, Nigeria. In 2005, Chineze immigrated to Los Angeles, California and began a one-year filmmaking program at the New York Film Academy. While at NYFA, she was recognized for creating an outstanding epic folktale, noted as the best “foreign film” of her graduating class.

A first time feature director, her directorial debut IJE: THE JOURNEY has received several awards both locally and internationally including the highest grossing Nigerian film by the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC) and has still remained unbeaten till date. In March 2012, Chineze was part of the panel at a conference in Harvard Business School discussing the entertainment industries in sub-Saharan Africa. She sits as the chairperson of the Nigerian Oscar Committee.

CHARLES NOVIA

Charles Novia is generally acknowledged as an avant-garde Nollywood filmmaker. Over the years, he has been involved with Nollywood in various capacities as a Scriptwriter, Producer and Director as well as a foremost creative entrepreneur. He’s the first major Nollywood filmmaker to write a book on the workings of the film industry in Nigeria and the book; ‘Nollywood till November: memoirs of a Nollywood Insider’ since its publication in 2012, has been well received by critics and scholars of the film sector in Nigeria.

NGOZI OKAFOR

Born in Lagos Nigeria, she studied at the University of Port Harcourt Nigeria where she obtained a BSc in Mathematics/Computer Science.

With strong and growing knowledge in IT, Administration and Marketing, she was a former Managing partner at Xandria Productions Limited, a media consultancy, production and film distribution company which handled the successful theatrical and DVD release of the multi award winning and highest grossing Nigerian film, IJE: THE JOURNEY. She has since been responsible for the successful distribution of several titles under the Xandria Productions label.

Ngozi’s production credits include Line producer, producer for the Short Film ‘Life’. She is keen to stand out for mastery and excellence.

EMEKA MBA

Emeka Nkem Mba, recently appointed the Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) is considered by many of his peers as a leading visionary in the converged fields of media, entertainment and technology, with over 23 years cross functional experiences in the converged fields of media & broadcasting, communications technology, and regulatory policy management. Prior to this appointment by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, Emeka had served for seven years between 2005 and July 2012 as Director General of the National Film and Video Censors Board, whilst at the NFVCB he undertook groundbreaking work in restructuring the Nigerian film industry.

Emeka has extensive experience in the media and communications fields, and is currently studying law from the External Programme of the University of London. Mr. Mba holds a B.Sc. Mass Communication, and an Advanced Management Programme (AMP) diploma in Media & Entertainment Management from the IESE Business School of New York.

CHIOMA UDE

The enigmatic founder and Executive Director of African International Film Festival (AFRIFF) is an ardent film lover. An avid film watcher and commentator, her passion for the industry grew more intense after her involvement in the production of the 2007 Nigerian Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) UK Roadshow. The ensuing relationship culminated in Chioma producing the 2008 Africa Movie Academy Awards and the institution of a brainchild of hers called the AMAA Charity Benefit. This novel initiative was designed to be an annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) platform for industry practitioners and stakeholders to give back to society.

In 2009, Chioma went to become the local producer of the ION International Film Festival (IONIFF), held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State in Nigeria. She enjoys fund-raising for filmmakers and has produced some premieres for some of the best films in the Nigeria.

AKIN SALAMI

Akin Salami is a man on a mission and he is also what you would call a serial entrepreneur. He has successfully launched several businesses across a number of sectors including film production, broadcast media, banking, technology, aviation and distribution.

The Mirror Boy, OH Films’ maiden feature film has gone on to break records and to date is one of the most awarded African movies of all time with over 20 awards across the world.

Akin is also part of international partnership that developed an IPTV film distribution platform called the OHBoX with a focus to promoting Africa and African content globally. The OHBoX platform is fast-becoming the secure Nollywood movie-release platform that is designed to benefit Nigerian and African movie producers.

Akin is a proud Nigerian, an ardent lover of film, an Executive Producer, Distributor and Content Developer. He attended Government College, Ibadan and is also a University of Ife, engineering graduate.

RAMSEY NOUAH

Ramsey Tokunbo Nouah is an actor and Stunt Director, Nouah’s acting career kicked off when he starred in the Nigerian TV soap opera Fortunes. Nouah has since then appeared in numerous films starring as the lead role. In 2010, Nouah won the African Movie Academy Award (AMAA) for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his performance in the Best Picture award winning film ‘The Figurine’. Ramsey is considered to be one of the most sought-after actors in Nigeria. To his credit are one hundred and forty five (145)-actor credit and more.

KENE MKPARU

Kene Mkparu is MD/CEO of Filmhouse Cinemas Nigeria, a dynamic cinema company with a combined management experience and a strategic plan to roll-out 25 cinemas over 6 years commencing in December 2012.

He is also MD of FilmOne film distribution limited. With over 20 years experience in cinema business management, Kene was MD, Genesis Deluxe Cinemas (2008-2010) and CEO, Film AFRICA UK (2005-2009). He was also General Manager with Odeon Cinemas UK (1991- 2008).

Kene has received industry achievement awards for entrepreneurship and for film production, in Nigeria and in the UK, Kene’s film production credits includes Line Producer, Producer and Cast for feature films in the UK and Nigeria.

Kene has an MSc degree in Business Systems Analysis & Design (City University, London, 2001), a Post Grad Diploma (King’s College, University of London, 1991) and a BSc Honors degree (University of Nigeria, 1988).

MILDRED OKWO

Mildred Okwo is a Theatre Arts graduate of the University of Benin Creative Arts Department (UNIBEN). In 1993, she bagged a Juris Doctor degree from Whittier College School of Law in California and practiced Civil Rights, Employment and Entertainment Law in Los Angeles, California for several years before returning to Nigeria in 2007.

In 2004, Mildred presented family friend and film producer Ego Boyo with the first ten pages of her screenplay “30 Days”. The idea for 30 Days was inspired by conditions Mildred observed in Nigeria, and by December 27, 2003 an article written by popular Nigerian columnist Simon Kolawale motivated Mildred to insist on writing and producing movies that gently prick the conscience of its audience. Further, Mildred

wanted to offer a better quality production to Nollywood viewers. 30 Days became her directorial and producing debut, and it received several accolades.

Her second film titled “The Meeting” is the result of that hiatus. The meeting released in October 2012 has received and continues to receive several accolades which most recently includes Best Nigerian Feature & President Goodluck Jonathan’s award for most authentic Nigerian Feature, African International film Festival (AFRIFF) 2013.

BIOLA ALABI

Biola Alabi the Managing Director of MNET Africa was named as one of the 2012 World Economic Forum Young Global leader and has racked up a slew of awards for her progressive and inspiring African vision over the last few years, including a prestigious 2013 AABLA win as West African Business Woman of the Year. She was also named one of the 20 Youngest Power Woman in Africa by Forbes Magazine. Alabi has spent the past five years increasing M-Net’s African portfolio, where she is responsible for driving the strategic growth of African indigenous content at MNET across the continent.

In 2012 Alabi led a restructure of the AfricaMagic channels, expanding the line-up from five general entertainment channels to eight themed channels. She has also overseen 5 editions of the popular reality series Big Brother Africa – Revolution, All Stars, Amplified, StarGame and the Chase. She was the driving force behind the 2013 inaugural Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards and the glittering Face of Africa Finale in Lagos in 2010.

OLUMIDE AMURE

Olumide holds a Bachelors Degree (B.Sc) in Management and Accounting from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. His career has spanned several years as a Consultant with Phillips Consulting Limited before he joined Entertainment Highway Limited as one of three founding staff and later rose to become the Chief Operating Officer of the Group. He is currently the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Entertainment Highway Investment Limited and its subsidiary Highway Distribution Limited.

As a member of the Corporate Finance Team, he has been involved in enterprise development activities. Olumide was one of the founding staff of Entertainment Highway Limited (later known as Hi Media Limited. He resigned from Hi Media in January 2011 to resume as the MD/CEO of Entertainment Highway Investment Limited – a media and entertainment company with a view to invest, own, operate and/or manage media and entertainment businesses throughout Africa. Olumide is also currently the Managing Director of Bloomberg Television Africa Limited.

SHAIBU HUSSEINI

A widely traveled Culture/film journalist and critic, Shaibu writes for Nigeria’s flagship newspaper-The Guardian. Reputed to be one of the most consistent documentarist of the Nigerian movie industry dubbed Nollywood, Shaibu, an alumnus of the International Visitors Leadership Programme (IVLP) of the United States Department of State is an astute commentator on arts and film development in Nigeria and the continent of Africa. Shaibu has written extensively on the state of the performance arts and runs columns on film/video industry in several newspapers and journals.

The Chair, for five years running now, of the College of Screeners of Africa’s premier film award-the African Movie Academy Award (AMAA) and a member of the prestigious AMAA jury. He is author of Moviedom, the Nollywood Narratives- Clips on the Pioneers. His other books on film and specifically on Nollywood are in publishing.

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MY DREAM IS TO PROVIDE AFfORDABLE ACOUSTICS FOR EVERY STUDIO IN AFRICA-MUSIC PRODUCER/ ACOUSTICS DESIGNER, DR GEE

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Emerging music producer turned acoustic designer, Gods time Maxwell Jatto a.k.a Dr. Gee, has audaciously declared that his goal is to have affordable acoustics produced by his company -Bounce Music in every studio across the continent of Africa , Dr.Gee said this decision was taken out of necessity.

The graduate of political Science, said he had to make the move in other to make his mark in the world of music.

He said “I decided to move into the world of acoustics when I felt I was not making enough income to look out for myself and my family and leave something I will be remembered for…”he continued in thesewords “What I always say to those who are close to me is that Nigeria is hard and good enough for us in show biz the industry is wide so you can move to something else if what you are doing presently is not paying you.


Is music production no more lucrative and has he left production and sound engineering? Not at all, it is still very lucrative if you feel the food it is putting on your table is enough, then continue but if you are like me make a move and do something else instead of complaining. As for your second question  I have not left production rather studio and acoustics designs gives me the opportunity to get more clients.
How  profitable has this been for him so far? We thank God that we are still in business  I know the big contracts will come in with time, but for now the joy I see on the faces of my customers is stil my great motivation. Can Dr.Gee share with us his biggest clients so far “wow they are many and I can’t really remember them now because they are still growing stars but I can tell you that the studio of the Grammy award wining Vtech was designed by my company Bounce music from top to bottom and Eager boy is another great client of mind. As one involved in the technical aspect of music, what must Nigerian music stars not do in other to loose the global attention the industry is enjoying now? My brother we must not drop our standards and strive to even improve day by day, I am proud of the likes of Davido, Burna Boy and wiz kid if other follow their food steps we will rule for a long time to come
How can Dr.Gee and Bounce music be accessed? well we are on Jiji always but our major distributors are Auxel music and M-Tech and you can find us in major Alaba music stores.
Dr.Gee began his journey into the world of music at K-solo’s music studio, where he studied as a producer and sound engineer gaining production credits in the albums of music greats like Timaya, Sunny Nnaji, MUMA Gee to mention but a few before setting up his personal business.
He is married with a son

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Africa Film Academy: Epe Class Premiers Long Walk To Forever

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The excited faces and applause at the Lagos Theatre, Epe, Lagos could pass for the performance of A-list acts on the big screen. However, the noise were those of family members, friends, parents and classmates of the Epe class of the film project of students of Africa Film Academy (AFA) – Film in a box -premiering their 10 minutes short film; Long Walk To Forever.

The initiative by Peace Anyiam Osigwe in conjunction with the Lagos state government in building capacity in the entertainment industry in three local governments of Alimosho, Badagry and Epe is yielding positive results.

According to Enwai, the coordinator of the Epe project, the students had a four-week theory before embarking on the practical aspect of the project.

She said:  The purpose of the premiere is towards actualizing their project for Africa Film Academy (AFA). We came in and had a workshop with the students in different departments like acting, directing, scriptwriting, cinematography.  AFA  in conjunction with Lagos State put together a workshop for the indigenes of Epe, creative , people  who are interested in joining the entertainment industry. We had facilitators coming to take the students on acting, directing, scriptwriting , cinematography and then CDGN craft like costume design, makeup, production design, and set design. Unfortunately here in Epe, we have more of the makeup creatives. They finished with their workshop and the students out together a short film to showcase what they have learnt. We are hoping this would help the students move on from here into something bigger.  Lagos state has been good with grants and the rest. We are hoping they get some money and continue from where they have started but basically what happens is that after the workshop , they are broken into companies and each company is going to continue from where they stopped. They put together stuff and hopefully, they would be empowered. We wish for the best for them. We have a mentoring session that hasn’t ended should they have any question, project or anything that they need help with.”

For Habeeb Seidu,  Head, Strategy and Training, it was an amazing experience  having 220 students participate  in Epe alone which cuts across other areas like sound, editing and same for the film director, Olaoluwa Owoduni, indigene a graduate of Business Administration who described his experience as joyful. He plans to make good use of the knowledge he has gathered to climb to the next level.

The Producer, Toba Obafemi informed that the major cast were 14 but all the 25 students of the class including crew members were given roles.

Peter Chukwuemeka DG, the Executive producer who in his personal capacity has produced a flick is also grateful for the Lagos state for the opportunity and vowed to continue in production, directing and acting.

Though she agreed that her role was challenging and even got to a point of frustration, the lead actress, Nimot Hassan, weathered the storm and currently preparing for greater challenges in acting.

From this smile, one can observe that loverboy lead actor, Olayinka Rotinwa gave a good account of himself on screen.

Assistant director, Oluwaseyi Jimoh said that that it was not his first time in directing but he is happy to be part of the project.

Dickson Omolara Florence, who played the role of the bride’s mother debunked her role as not her actual person off screen as she said that she is a gentle and kind woman.

Adding his voice to the many thanks showered on the Lagos state government as well as giving an overview of the project, Dean of the faculty, veteran actor, Keppy Ekpeyong –Bassey said: “What we do is to recruit interested participants in about Nine (9) departments of filmmaking. We have the mandate to capacity build the three local government areas; Alimosho, Badagry and Epe. And we have been doing this six (6) months at a stretch,  we have done it for some time, we have recruited some of the best brains as facilitators in the industry and the good part of it is that they are not just from the academia, we are having working practitioners also sharing experiences. We bring in people like Jide kosoko, probably Saidi Balogun, to share their experiences and encourage the participants at all levels. Today, the students in Epe have produced their first short film. They put a premiere together and that is what they are screening. They are now more motivated now than ever because they have seen themselves for the first time on the big screen. They are hearing the applause from their classmates, parents, friends who they invited and they are realising that they can do it. The important thing is not size of building capacity, it is the fact that it is translative and already they are producing films.

And the next level after this first short film which is like a class project, it is like that in each of the local governments where we are building capacity. We break the students into four companies randomly, everybody is mixed up with all participants and they are challenged to produce films. So, we have repertoire of short films which they have produced and all the things that would be uploaded shortly and you would see what these people have done in a short time is unbelievable. What that means is not that they are the best at teaching, it is the fact that they are hungry. The participants are rather enthusiastic and they also demonstrate a lot of passion and they are translating it. We are really excited about the Lagos state government. This is about the only government that is investing heavily in entertainment. Averagely we have 250 students in each of our local government. In this present exercise, we have built capacity in over 750 people. During the exercise because of the long duration, we give them a meal a day and we found out that some of them are not really as healthy as they look, so there is a medical team that comes in and check their sugar levels, heart beats and subsequently advise them on what to do. The scope our curriculum goes beyond the focal areas , so we included project management , mental health issues, personal hygiene, branding – those key areas to give them a more rounded feel about real life and help them key into that and take off. For instance, we started from Alimosho and since then, they have been producing their own films and sending us what they have done. We broke them into companies so that we can keep supervising what they do. Lagos state has also volunteered to give them loans and grants, all they have to do is, come together of the companies which we have created for them and pitch, then they will consider their pitch and give them grants or loans. It doesn’t just stop now, it is a continuous exercise for them. This is a success story for me. I am waiting to see more. This vision of AFA is a Peace Anyaiam Osigwe initiative; the rest of us are just executing on her behalf.”

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AFRIMA 2022: PUBLIC VOTING STARTS SUNDAY AS PWC AUDITS AWARDS PROCESS

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The voting portal for the 2022 edition of the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) opened on Sunday, September 25, at 21:00 (CAT), to the public, globally, to decide the winners of each of the 39 award categories. 

The International Committee of the All Africa Music Award (AFRIMA), in conjunction with the African Union Commission (AUC), made this announcement, encouraging African music lovers to vote intensively using the voting portal live at www.afrima.org, before the portal closes on December 10, 2022, which is the eve of the awards.

More information on the voting process, which would also be audited by the International auditing firm, PriceWaterHouseCoopers (PWC), can also be found on the website, as well as AFRIMA’s social media (Instagram/TikTok – @Afrima.official; Facebook – Afrimawards; Twitter – @afrimaofficial).

Like it did at the AFRIMA 2021 edition, the PWC, which has audited other major global awards including the Oscars, will audit the voting portal, collate the votes and present them at the awards.

According to AFRIMA’s Executive Producer/President, Mike Dada, “AFRIMA’S core values of FACE IT – Fairness, Authenticity, Creativity, Excellence, Integrity and Transparency remain at the heart of our operations. With PWC, we are further reinforcing these value drivers, ensuring that we remain as inclusive, credible and authentic as always.”

The list of nominees were unveiled globally, penultimate Wednesday, revealing a total of 382 nominations across all 39 categories.

The nominations, which have been greeted with positive acclaim across the world, are the fruit of a rigorous 10-day adjudication held by AFRIMA’s 13-member jury, in July.

Also, only entries within the validity period of August 20, 2021 to August 5, 2022, were considered for nomination for this year’s awards.

According to Mike Dada, the awards body remains the ultimate recognition of African music globally, also serving as a muse to other award bodies across the continent.

“We are not oblivious to the fact that there are some other award bodies that copy our nominations every year. As the ultimate recognition of African music, globally, we are a source of inspiration to both music gatekeepers and music lovers across the entire industry. AFRIMA continues to blaze the trail in celebrating African talent and developing our creative ecosystem, and this year’s edition is a step further in that direction,” he said.

On her part, the African Union Commission’s Head of Culture, Mrs Angela Martins encouraged music lovers to vote decisively and objectively.

She said, “We have done our part. It is left to you the fans to now decide your winners. Remember that these categories are highly competitive and are based on merit. Let your votes help the best person(s) emerge as champion.”

The 2022 All Africa Music Awards will now be held from the 8th to 11th December, 2022.

A special announcement will be made on the host country and location for the awards, on 30th September, 2022.

The AFRIMA awards ceremony will feature a 4-day fiesta of music, glitz, and glamour aimed at celebrating Africa, recognising talents and expanding the economic frontiers of the culture and creative industry on the continent.

The event is scheduled to commence with the welcome soiree, followed by the AFRIMA Music Village, the host city tour, Africa Music Business Summit, and the exclusive nominees’ party and concluded with the live awards ceremony broadcast to over 84 countries around the world.

African music lovers can take part in the events on social media, live stream on the AFRIMA website at www.afrima.org and visit the social media platforms (IG/TikTok – @afrima.official; Facebook – Afrimawards; Twitter – @afrimaofficial; LinkedIn – AFRIMA) ), and they can watch the event coverage by tuning in to their local and cable TV providers.

In partnership with the African Union Commission, AFRIMA is a youth-focused music platform that recognizes and rewards the work and talents of African artistes across generations.

AFRIMA primarily stimulates conversations among Africans, and also the rest of the world, especially on the potential of the creative arts for fostering real human enterprise, as well as contributing significantly to social cohesion, as well as sustainable development in Africa.

The Programme of events is in line with the AU Agenda 2063 which outlines Aspiration 05 as the development of the arts and culture sector including its cultural and creative industries, to boost the development of the African economy.

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