and its marketing is the economic mainstay of some countries. Notable among these
countries are India of old, and
to some extent, United States and France. In America film
awards especially the Oscar awards is eagerly looked forward to by many artistes
as itcould mark a turning point in their careers.
Also the Cannes Film Festival held in France is not easily toyed with by film
The Nigeria film industry 15 years ago was nothing to write home about. Many of
the films shot in the country were shabbilyproduced
with low quality film equipment. Again the storyline and scripting were bad with
amateurs handling the storyboarding. The only
exceptions were the works of the late sage of the
industry, Herbert Ogunde, who took Nigerian films acrossthe globe. Though, there were few others whose works were
globally applauded too.
a dramatic change has occurred with new buoyancy in the film industry. Today
Nigerian films have become a source offoreign
exchange earnings for the country. The trend is fast changing with each day
producing a new film in the market.Statistics show an
annual turnout of over 1,000 films.
Quite unlike the past, the film industry is better organised and regulated.
Bodies like the Film Makers Association, National Copyright Commission,
National Film and Video Censors Board and Actors and
Actress bodies among others are in place to bring sanity to the industry. Stake holders in the
industry recently pooled resources to open a Nigerian Film Market in Surulere
area of Lagos State, where un-pirated films at wholesale prices can be bought
directly from the producers.
Nigeria fall into different categories based on the language of production. We
have films that are shot exclusively in Yoruba language, Igbo language, Hausa
language and those in English language. Predominant among these films are
those filmed in Yoruba and English language films, though some of the films shot in indigenous
languages are subtitled in English. Unlike film makers in other parts of the
world, a unique development in the Nigerian film industry most especially Yoruba
films is the use of same actors' and actresses' stage names in different films. This
allows for easy identification of your favourite actors or actresses.
these positive developments have led to a gradual recognition of the Nigerian
film industry by the world. Though, foreign exchange earnings are still in
trickles it is believed that given the pace the industry is going, time will be
Government on its part is trying its best for the industry; although much is
desired from them. The government has supportedthe
production of more indigenous movies especially those with historical and
cultural inclinations. Key players in the industry are constantly appealing to
the government to assist them by reducing the import duties on their equipment which
are solely sourced from abroad. Also they desire an improvement of the economy
and foreign exchange regime in order for them to be able to get the equipment at
a cheaper price.
Part of the challenges faced by the industry is the menace of pirates and video
clubs. Many of the films in the country are being reproduced by pirates and sold
for cheaper prices thereby costing the producers
investments. Also, they face the problem of tackling the video clubs where new
films are bought and rented causing potential loss in sales of such films. At
other times, the film makers are accused of making some nude and obscene films
and films depicting horrible rituals scenes.
Presently, the film industry is dominated by private investors. Though, abundant
opportunities still remain to be tapped in the industry. Investment openings
include: equipment sale and leasing, organised marketing and publicity, building
of more cinema houses, film studios, script writing, video clubs, and better
distribution chain, artist management among others.