I would first like to say a big thank you to the organizers / stakeholders of this platform that have given me the opportunity to say something about Nollywood.
It is sincerely an honour to be here with you all today. I also want to thank you all for your belief in Nollywood because that is a factor I want to submit that has brought us here tonight.
Nollywood is presently thriving in the mist of failed African government, we continue to tell our stories with variations of narratives our way to the global audience, despite all the mismanagement of public funds we constantly continue to build a positive African continent.
We cannot ignore that the Nollywood of our dreams is what we are all about and we are gradually building this block by block, film production after film production.
It is my sincere submission that we should therefore not allow walls of division to separate us from our focus.
The historical trajectory of Nollywood started since the pre and post independent Nigeria, with the theatrical (stage) and cinematic (celluloid) .
However, we can’t talk about Nollywood without mentioning the great film makers like Hubert Ogunde a man known as ‘’the father of Nigerian theatre’’ Chief Amata, Baba Sala, Ade Love A.KA Adeyemi Afolayan, Eddie Ugboma,Ola Balogun, Matt Dadzie and many more who have inspired,t rained,and contributed immensely to our present status.
By the early 80’s and downwards an explosion in home video production appeared to be the antidote required to propel Nollywood at the proper initial stages.
We can in no small measure ignore the vast contributions of the home video as a force at that time. As it is with every dream and vision,I take it then that we should always thank the initiators,the dreamers and the visionaries then for being able to see ahead of what was on ground even at that early stage.
We presently live in exciting times with Nollywood now over taken Bollywood in its total GDP in the movie industry.
However in all honesty, getting Nollywood to where it is today has been a struggle. But like all genuine struggles, there must always be shortcomings here and there which will and must be addressed .
Permit therefore to focus on two areas that are very dear to my heart because of the time I have been given.
One of the most crucial problem that Nollywood still finds hard to resolve Is that we still lack an adequate framework and distribution channels across the globe. We lack a finished structure or framework that encapsulates the end to end process of film making from conception to distribution, with distribution being the biggest challenge in the ever growing and thriving industry.
This is not to ignore the fact that The Nollywood industry of today is quite dynamic in the way and manner in which the structure is developing, and I must say we are still far from a finished framework but one in the making.
Secondly, My candid believe is that we are one single entity as I have reiterated in the early part of this presentation. The gross misconception that Nollywood is a divided entity where film makers and casts that reside outside the shores of Africa should be looked upon as outsiders is unjust. Afterall, the world has indeed become a global village therefore African film producers, actors, cinematographers, set designers residing outside their home countries shouldn’t be considered castaways But rather part of the one big Nollywood family. Therefore a cast living outside africa should embrace the opportunity to work with talents of a different geographical location. Let us remember that we heal as one or we breakdown divided, we should not look at a Monolithic Nollywood, from a geographical perspective but a global perspective. Our geographical location should not be a barrier to how we work together as one. The greatest core of what Nollywood is truly about is a people irrespective of their locations telling the African story according to their individual experiences.
Unity Of Purpose Will Move Nollywood Forward, We all need to look at the bigger picture as Nollywood is presently the biggest pioneer of the African culture.
I want to emphasise that Nollywood’s stakeholders living in the UK have made Nollywood more cosmopolitan than any other geographical region on the globe.
The way and manner in which non- Africans embrace Nollywood today is now very positive and encouraging that we all can’t afford to abide by the divide and rule mentality of our colonial masters, as we all must stand together as one entity and not criticize our colleagues when required to join us all on a film making project done in the UK, the USA and all.
We all need to support integration in Nollywood as this does not just happen without each one of us being fully involved.
I have a dream that one day Nollywood would be able to create global block buster’s just like Hollywood, to be able to create movies that would be nominated and win Oscars, as I believe we have the talents that can do that in this generation. We are going somewhere great, mark my words today.
We are going to achieve excellence in big things but we must all develop the habit in little matters.
The path to greatness has never been easy and we should not expect an easy ride to the top.
We can either stretch each other’s vision to its full potentials if we stand together or we could all stay divided and choke each other’s dream. The part of us that does not increase us in unity will eventually decrease us.
We now have 3 films that have made over 150 million naira which is about £300,000,
· Wedding Party 1 & 2 – Made by 4 different entities (Companies)
· A Trip to Jamaica
With statistics like this I know, we can only get bigger and better at creating a viable industry for us all, Thank you all and have a wonderful evening!
@MarcAdebesin CEO http://bluewaterssolutions.com