BY ‘SEGUN ODEJIMI
The biggest and most prestigious award ceremony dedicated to rewarding film efforts, The Academy Awards – or Oscars, overseen by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) is eighty-seven years old. So, it can only be foolishness to think that any of the film awards in Nigeria – all of which are all less than two decades old will be just as “perfect” as the Oscars.
No. That’s not what this article is about. This article not more than an attempt to highlight what the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA), Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCA), Best of Nollywood awards and the likes can, and should, be doing better than what they currently do.
This is 2016 and considering the technology and creativity available to Nigeria/Africa, some of these holes are just too big to ignore.
- Choice of award show host(s). I was up all night to watch the recently held Golden Globe Awards. Apart from my job requiring that I do stay up, I harbour no personal regrets for annihilating the spirit of sleep in me for something that held thousands of kilometres away from my Lagos residence. Ricky Gervais absolutely killed it! He was phenomenal. And he was the sole host. But every time he stepped on stage, the audience expected something epic from that bearded mouth of his. The looks on the faces of those in the auditorium said it all. This guy was confident, aware, intelligent, well-rehearsed and he knew what he was doing.Sadly, same adjectives cannot be used for most award show hosts in Nigeria. It always seems like they spent their whole preparation period worrying about what they would wear rather than do their research and “perfect” their performances. IK Osakioduwa and Vimbai Mutinhiri‘s performance at last year’s AMVCA is not something you’d want to watch again. Honestly.
- Adherence to time. Who says the Nigerian arts and entertainment industry cannot correct the shameful malfunction we have christened “African Time”? Whether it is a couple of minutes late or several hours behind schedule (I’m looking at you, Headies), late is late. I mean, you have 365 days to fix whatever will make you kick off an event later than the time advertised. When it comes to being on time, no soul on the planet takes HipHopWorld Awards seriously any longer. It’s become laughable.
- Social media coverage. Step forward, AMAA. This one’s for you. BON and all the other minor distractions should queue behind. AMVCA, you’re excused.During last year’s AMAA, I was glued to the award’s official Twitter handle. At least, if I wasn’t in South Africa, I should be able to follow the event from the comfort of my bed. I was wrong. A snail is almost faster than that handle. Thank God for individuals who were at the venue and decided to save the world with their phones and other devices.
YearsHours after the show had ended, there was nothing that looked like the list of winners on the AMAA website.
- Dear AMAA and the other pretenders, the world now runs on the fuel of social media. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and so on have taken over as fast and effective mediums of disseminating information – especially who won what seconds ago.
- “Broadcast-ability”. Truth be told, no indigenous Nigerian award ceremony is fit for live worldwide coverage. None! From the shame of non-functional microphones to hosts not knowing if winners are present or not, to empty seats and ranting award winners. Add to that, buoda Olamide’s uneducated act of foolery at the January 1st Headies and you’ll see how far we are from keeping people on other continents up to watch our awards. We’re still even too timid to switch off mics when things are beginning to go bad on stage.
- Record-keeping. This is a national problem, anyway, so no point wasting too much time ranting about how conducting an online research about any of these our awards is the most harrowing experience you’re likely to ever go through. Take a look at this page and have an idea of what I mean. Meanwhile, our Headies friends are yet to update their
siteblog, more than three weeks after the 2015 event held.