Gone are the days when musicians and movie practitioners run abroad to shoot their music and movie videos even if the theme didn’t talk more about foreign land. Today, there is love in the land and ANTHONY ADA ABRAHAM writes on the new love for Abuja as a destination for shooting movie and music videos
In the past, everything that brings fun to life was in Lagos. From hospitality to entertainment, culture and tourism, everybody from all parts of the country wants to visit Lagos.
In those days, if a group of young men were discussing, 90 per cent of that discussion had to do with travelling to Lagos, as it is believed it is a land filled with milk and honey.
The capital city, Abuja, was not as over populated as it is today. There were few houses, pubs, hotels, and joints that people could go to satisfy their cravings.
Today, the case is different. It is just like wanting to enter a tiny room where there is no space. The congestion of the city has also brought in many positives. Just like the Bible says, “the stone the builders rejected, is now the chief corner stone.”
The city of Abuja has good locations and edifices for shooting any international standard movie that could be compared to any part of the world.
Anywhere one goes, the beauty of the city sparkle both day and night. Wuse II doesn’t sleep likewise Garki. People come from near and far to enjoy themselves, hence making it one of the fastest bubbling cities in the world.
According to versatile actor and moviemaker, Robert Peters, who spoke with e-Rendezvouz at the location of the movie ‘ Zero Hour’, shot in Abuja, he says that Nigerian movies have impacted a lot on Nigerians. “I travelled out of the country in 2005 and got some training, though I live in Atlanta presently, my coming back has taught me too many things. You know, when you get some training, you come back with that stupid mentality like ooh I am coming to teach them how to make films and everybody that comes with that mentality fails. You see, we are the third largest film industry in the world; there is something that makes us great, our originality. I go to cinemas a lot in the US and you go to watch American films and you can’t wait for them to finish so that you can go home. And my biggest problem here with people who are trying to copy American films is that we need to stay on the part that made us great in the first place which are our original films. These days, you watch our films and they are technically better, some of them actually look like something shot in LA (Los Angelis) but when you begin to watch it, it’s so boring, so short. So, what other filmmakers and I are trying to do is take those stories that made us great in the first place, marry it to the new technology that we have and tell our stories, being unique in our styles of storytelling, that’s where we are right now.”
The versatile filmmaker, whose most successful films were the comedies, who also made ‘ 30 Days in Atlanta,’ ‘Trip to Jamaica’, believes that the future is bright for the film industry and for Abuja in particular. “It’s going to be great, we are going mainstream, believe me, I am telling all the practitioners, you guys should start positioning yourself. I am sorry to say this, Nollywood is not the best of business because we lack structure and for a very long time, we were waiting for the government to set the structure for us. But we are beginning to find out that we need to set the structure, we are the people that wear the shoe and know where it hurts, all we just need is for the government to pass policies so that we can tell the story the way we want to tell it, so, the future of this industry is bright. Times are not so good because almost 50 per cent of films made out of Nollywood do not break even, but it’s coming, the glory cometh.
Speaking with Rahama Sadau, she said she is happy that practitioners from other parts of the country are finding the North worthy to shoot movies.
“I feel very proud because now, the people from the Southern part of the country are coming to shoot in the North, which is overwhelming and exciting and we hope to see more in the near future,” she said.
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