Efforts towards achieving a global status for the Nigerian film industry has been given a huge boost with the recent unveiling in Lagos of the Africa Cinematography Festival of Training Workshops, Conference and Film Technology Expo, a platform which focuses primarily on capacity-building for budding and professional players.
Nigerian entrepreneur and founding Grand Matron, Africa Cinematography Festival, Mrs. Folorunsho Alakija led other notable personalities among who include Frank Adekunle Edwards, CEO of FMA Productions; Henry Emenike, CEO of Germany-based Legacy Empire Management (LEM); Mrs. Judith Alakija, founding ambassador and Director General, Event Coordination, Africa Cinematography Festival and Sunnie Odafe, Co-founder, Africa Cinematography Festival (ACF) at the unveiling.
Speaking at the unveiling, Mrs. Folorunsho Alakija said that the platform speaks to the Nigerian spirit as well as the yearning of many of our talented men and women who presently appear to have hit the crossroads between their dreams and their realization.
Mrs. Alakija also called for the empowerment of the younger generation of the nation’s huge populace as a way of guaranteeing a productive economy.
Her words, “I share the view that the future of a country, nation or people is a direct function of what the younger generation makes of it. This fact, as common a cliché as it may have become in our national discourse, stresses the need to prioritize the empowerment of those within the bracket. Our youths need to be taught life skills and be empowered with adequate capacity required to enable them become major contributors to the economy and society. Achieving this of course, requires strategic participation from players in both the public and private sectors. It is no mean feat, but the reward is greater and this is the satisfaction”.
In her own remarks, Mrs. Judith Alakija who doubles as the project’s founding ambassador and Director General of Events and Coordination, said the platform through its capacity-building role will “champion a departure from the old model of film-making, sound production, light production and entertainment, to a new all-inclusive one that will promote youth entrepreneurship and accord our country a place among the leading nations with a healthy film making and entertainment economy.”
While speaking on the birth of the initiative, the project’s co-founder and chief executive officer of Germany-based Legacy Empire Management (LEM), Henry Emenike described the Africa Cinematography Festival as “a child of necessity” that will put the industry on track for the desired impact.
He regretted that the erosion of trust has resulted in the reluctance of foreign companies to partner with the local players in the area of technical assistance for the development of the industry.
“Through the ACF, we want to provide a platform for trust and partnership between the manufacturers of these equipment and film makers. There is a huge technology gap in our local film production. With the ACF, we are hopeful of bridging this gap by creating a meeting point for both cinematography equipment manufacturers and film makers. The Africa Cinematography Festival envisions a new era and embodies an industry buoyed by technological advancement”, he said.
The maiden Africa Cinematography Training Workshop, Conference and Technology Expo Festival (ACF), is a beneficial training conference and marketing platform for exceptional professional development in filmmaking, film entrepreneurship and networking. It is designed to be an annual rallying point for all stakeholders in the film economy of Nigeria in particular and Africa at large.
The Festival is expected to provide the platform for the convergence of relevant stakeholders in the film-making industry for the optimization of the inherent potentials and prospects of technological advancement in audiovisual and still productions. It will feature contemporary issues in filmmaking, networking and business opportunities and the general film economy which have impacted on the works of industry professionals such as film makers, marketers and investors, cinema/studio owners and managers, the organized private sector, government agencies and councils and technical partners.