International Documentary film Festival: Participants Call For Collaboration, Mentorship, African Stories Narrative In Nigerian Movie Industry


Editors and contributors to the book, ‘Inside Nollywood’ with guests presenting the book to the public at the just concluded iREPRESENT International Documentary Film Festival in Lagos

Participants at the just concluded iREPRESENT International Documentary Film Festival have resolved that Nollywood needs collaborations, mentorship, African stories narrative, continuous education on new film techniques  and knowledgeable critics for the Nigerian film industry to make desired impact and compete with Hollywood and Bollywood which are the largest film industries in the world.


The participants also  resolved at the need for film journalists and  development of online platforms dedicated to film among others.


These were the summation of the position  of the teeming participants which included scholars, film directors, producers, critics, students, actors and actresses among others at the Committee for Relevant Art (CORA)  Art Stampede which was the closing programme of the international film documentary festival held at the Freedom Park, Broad Street,  Lagos, between Wednesday, March 21 and Sunday, March 25, 2018.


Also,  a book, which is a compilation of research works by scholars, journalists and practitioners in the film industry titled, ‘Inside Nollywood’ and edited by Sola Fosudo and Tunji Azeez, was presented at the festival.


The book, which has 31chapters, was reviewed by Dr Tunde Onikoyi.


Mr Ralph Nwadike, President, Association of Movie Producers, Chioma Ude, Founder, AFRIF, Dr Tunde Onikoyi, a Scholar, Mr Tunkji Azeez and Mrs Judith, a Producer,  were the discussants for a lecture titled, ‘Nollywood, New Nollywood, Neo Nollywood’ while Mr Ropo Ewenla was the moderator of the very engaging session.

Local and foreign guests at the Freedom Park’s amphitheatre during the screening of ‘My Father’s Book’ at the just concluded festival in Lagos

While Nwadike, Judith Audu and Chioma Ude were of the views that film critics in Nigeria have not been professional and lack require knowledge about the industry, Tunji Azeez and …… called for more intervention by the critics to bring out the best in the film writers, actors, directors and producers.


Aside the appeal for intervention from film critics, discussants and the audience also agreed on other areas especially on the issue of collaboration among film makers and other relevant agents. It was agreed that established actors and actresses should engage more in collaborative efforts to give the viewers quality film production.


Participants also called for the development of film journalists for adequate and effective reportage of the film industry and the need for mentorship of new and upcoming actors and actresses in the industry.


Among films that were screened for the  first time ever at the festival were ‘Rhapsody in White’, a film by the multi-award winning travel journalist, Pelu Awofeso, ‘My Father’s Book’ by Kagho Idhebor and Kagho Akpor.


Rhapsody in White is a short documentary which centres on the over 300 years old Eyo Festival and its unique place in the culture of Lagosians.


This documentary is a behind-the-scenes look at the week-long series of rituals and processions that leads to the grand finale which is usually being attended by several thousands of guests and participants. Eyo festival is ranked  one of the most colourful and engaging festival in Nigeria which attracts both local and foreign tourists.


My Father’s Book is documentary on the development and transition from live music to disco and back to live music in Nigeria especially in the old Bendel area of the country.


This was in the 1970s when there was an explosion of new ideas, music and fashion.  In the centre of all these were many club deejays top of which was Charlie Bee who was a resident deejay at Langer hotel.

During a session at the festival

During that period were also other deejays such as Mellis Menta, Isaac Brew Bees, Tony Bee, Murphy Okogie, Bloodstone, Tony Azeta and Emma Dirty Boogie among others.


After the demise of Charlie Bee at a young age in a ghastly motor accident,  most of other deejays either left the country or go into businesses, and this led to a change in the entertainment life of the country.


The accounts of this period were captured in a book by an entertainment journalist, Caesar Kagho, whose children became film documentary producers.


Other films screened at the festival were ‘When Paul Came Over The Sea’, a 97 minutes film by Jakob Preuss, ‘Jackenson’, a 25 minutes film by Linda Diatta, ‘Green and Yellow’ by Miguel Galore, ‘Revenir’, a 83 minutes film by David Fedele and Mumut Imesh and ‘Rastas’ Journey ‘Home’’, a film by Maria Stratford.


Others were ‘The Other Side of the Atlantic’ by Marcio Camara and Danielle Ellery, ‘The Voice of Kora’ by Claudine Pommier, ‘The Good Ones’ by Molly Blank, ‘Galamsey – For A Fistful of Gold’ a 28 minutes film by Johannes Preuss, ‘The Congo Tribunal’ by Milo Rau, ‘Counter Histories: Rock Hill’ by Frederick Taylor, and ‘Color of Wine’ by Akin Omotosho among many others.

Mr Femi Odugbemi, the Co-Founder/Executive Director, iREPRESENT International Documentary Film Festival, in his welcome address at the beginning of the festival stated:


“We are excited to continue an important conversation on archives and safeguarding the visual history of our cultures and contemporary realities. Last year we focused on the cinematic assets of Africa’s past and the challenge of recovering, digitalizing and re-assessing historical content” said Mr Odugbemi


“This year we chose to extend the conversation into the future; looking at what realities exist for a new generation of storytellers to capture in present-tense the rapidly evolving archives of Africa’s social, political and economic history”


“No other art inspires reflects like film. If nothing else came from our engagements last year, this much we agreed on – we must fight to make African cinema more than a place of entertainment, but also in these times, our cinema must be a place of reflection, discuss, provocation and debates” he added.





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