BY ‘SEGUN ODEJIMI
While everyone is arguing over stuff like restructuring, whether or not there should be Biafra, what happens in 2019, whether Diezani Alison-Madueke should be extradited from the UK and so on, the folks in Nollywood are knuckling down to do their job and getting quite better at it by the day.
As days roll by, more people are being converted from the laughable “I don’t watch Nollywood” phrase to people who stroll into cinemas and ask for a ticket or two to see a Nigerian film.
Earlier this year, the record for highest grossing film in a Nigerian cinema was shattered. The Wedding Party not only usurped the previous record holder, it opened up a frightening almost-N300m lead. TWP was so commercially successful that a year seems a long time for fans to wait for a sequel. That sequel will be released sometime in December 2017 after being shot, for the most part, expense-paid in Dubai, UAE.
2017 has also witnessed what a lot of enthusiasts and critics have described as the Nigerian film with the best special effects and fight choreography in recent times. Banana Island Ghost may be accused of other production or artistic crimes, but not any of the two listed above. Walt Banger has made a pretty cool and watchable crime thriller in Catch.er while Dare Olaitan‘s Ojukokoro was a near-masterpiece in writing.
When the trailer for Amina was released a month or two ago, many of us wondered why a lot of noise had not, before then, been made about that film. We had watched a trailer for a film that was well on its way to becoming Nollywood’s best production in years and a lot of people still marvel at the seeming absence of publicity buzz by the producers of the epic.
While everyone is trying to have a say in what Rochas Okorocha was smoking when he made a statue of Jacob Zuma and many of us are wondering who the fuck thought it appropriate to give the highest title for a warrior in Yorubaland to Ganiu Adams, Nollywood is chipping away at the stones of excellence. And they are getting deeper in it.