THE 5-day showcase of old flicks from Nigeria’s film repertoire continues today with the screening of Hostages, the wave-making 1997 action thriller from OGD Pictures at 8pm at the Blue Pictures Cinema located on the 3rd floor of Lagos City Mall at Onikan, Lagos Island.
The screening is on the platform of the “Nollywood Classics”, a segment of the ongoing 7th Realtime International film Festival, which will end tomorrow with screening ofThe Kingmaker, the 2002-released political drama, produced by Lufodo Productions.
The ‘Nollywood Classics’ segment of the RTF, is designed to recognise the works done by veteran filmmakers, which gave birth to the current shape and character of the films being produced today, according to the founder/director of the RTF, Stanlee Ohikhuare.
He continued: “The films showing in the segment have been specially selected to show the various tendencies of the basis of what is today known as the Nollywood film production aesthetics.”
Other classics that have so far featured In the course of the 5-day (August 22-26)showcase, had held at the Freedom Park, Broad street Lagos Island. These have been A-Productions’ Vigilante and Ose Sango (22nd); DV Worx’s Maroko (23rd); Mainframe Productions’ Thunderbolt and Campus Queen (24th); and Ladi Ladebo Productions’ Heritage (25th).
DIRECTED by the famous filmmaker, Tade Ogidan for the OGD Pictures, Hostages, shot 1990-1991 but released in 1996, is a story with great twists and turns, featuring extensive police action and a great story line full of chair-edge suspense. It has featured in a number of international film festivals; and won several awards at the then prestigious Nigerian Movie Awards, including Best Film, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best supporting Actress and Actor, Best Director and Best Screenplay, among others. Its TV serial version has also been broadcast on TV in and outside Nigeria. It stars in the lead roles Tope Idowu, Ofuafo Otomewo, Richard Mofe Damijo, Yomi Obileye, Ebele Okaro, Bimbo Manuel, Lanre Balogun, Antar Laniyan, Tunji Sotimirin, Danjuma Mohammed, Layi Ashadele, Tunji Olugbodi and Zainab Buky Ajayi.
The Kingmakers, about the only known movie produced by the frontline live-theatre-producing organisation, Lufodo Productions, is directed by Fred Amata nd stars a grouo of A-listers in the Nollywood scene of old.
The film itself was a history-maker being one of the three experimental projects designed to launch the idea of the Nigeria Film Makers Cooperative, which was initiated as a counter-measure against the move by a collective of film marketers, who due to some disagreements with some filmmakers on modalities for relationship between filmmakers and marketers, decided in the early 2002, to stop patronising filmmakers’ works.
Led by the front-lining producers, directors and actors of the time, the birth of the NFMC led to the setting up of a physical market by the filmmakers on Babs Animashaun Street, in the heart of Surulere, Lagos, which was opened officially on June 29, 2003.
The market was launched with a fanfare with larger-than-life posters and banners to herald the production’s release, according to the journalist Fred Iwenjora then of Vanguard newspaper.
EXPLAINING further the OHIKHUARE, the multi-skilled storyteller and founder/director of the RTF, “Importantly, the selected films will serve as educational and mentoring tools for the pool of young filmmakers who may never have encountered them or their makers, and who form the bulk of the festival’s participants and patrons.
Continued Ohikhuare: “The plan is to use the edition to pay tribute to the “labour of the heroes past” by showcasing high points of the glorious moments in the chequered journeys of the Nigerian cinema. “This will be done through the showcasing of some of the films that made a huge and impactful impression in the 1990s through the 2000s before the now famous ‘Nollywood’ came to formally acquire its name and current character.”
The “Nollywood Classics Showcase” was launched Monday, August 22, with ‘Vigilante’ (1988) and Ose Sango (1991) produced by the filmic Adesanya brothers – Adedeji and Afolabi, the former Managing Director of Nigerian Film Corporation, NFC, who after the screening, had a riveting engagement with the audience, comprising fellow Nigerian filmmakers and a few of the international participants in the festival.
Tuesday, August 23 was the turn of the master storyteller and content creator, Femi Odugbemi, whose socially-conscious film, Maroko (1998) reflecting on State-backed oppression of the poor masses by land grabbing greed of the elites, which was screened to loud applause and intense engagement with the audience.
On Wednesday, August 24, were shown two of the films from the repertory of the ace Cineaste, Tunde Kelani – Thunderbolt (2001) and The Campus Queen (2004).
On Thursdy, August 25 was screened Ladi Ladebo’s Heritage, the history-making film whoch received lavish critical reviews when it was released in 2003. It incidentally was the very last film work of the late frontline Advertising practitioner turned Filmmaker, Ladebo, who passed on last year, aged 70.
Six films have featured so far in the “Nollywood Classics” segment, which ends today.
Further details on the full programming content of the festival can be seen at www.realtimefilmfestival.com.