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Heritage restates support for creative industry

Heritage Bank

Heritage Bank Plc has reiterated commitment to the growth and development of Nigeria’s creative industry, as one of the major contributors to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

In an assessment of the industry’s performance done recently, Nollywood defied recession, and had grossed an amazing N1billion from a record 50 indigenous movies in 2016 – its best box office returns ever.

The Group Head, Corporate Communications, Fela Ibidapo, in a chat with journalists, said the bank prides itself in its ability to hand hold different sectors of the economy in order to nurture them and help them to grow.

He added that the bank’s participation in the recent Nigeria’s creative summit has further given it a boost, as it is now more committed to supporting the entertainment industry.

Ibidapo noted that the creative industry is one of the major contributors to Nigeria’s GDP, and Heritage Bank is committed to supporting it because it is part of the country’s heritage.

According to him, the bank is proud of the entertainment industry, and will continue to stand by operators in it by supporting them and watch them grow.

“We had worked with Mekloss Production & Frankie Ogar Film to produce the first edition of the movie – A soldier’s story return from the dead, and we are also committed to work with them in the production of the second edition of the movie,” he said.

He noted that the Nigerian entertainment industry has come of age, as there are now more exposures with many of them now showing in cinemas.

A movie producer, Martin Gbados, said they got support from Heritage Bank to make the first edition, and still wants to involve the bank in the production of the second edition, which would involve a leading American movie star, Eric Roberts, and other international and local stars such Akin Lewis, and Segun Arinze, among others.

Roberts is a Golden Globe Award three times nominee as well as two times nominee of Academy Award for his supporting role in Runway Train (1985) as well as a prolific film producer in the U.S.

Gbados said the entertainment industry needed support from the Federal Government and investors to be able to produce films in Nigeria so that much of the money that goes into film production could be retained in-country.

The central theme of the A soldier’s story return from the dead, is about the sacrifices that soldiers and other security agents make in the course of carrying out their duties.

The film producer noted that, “We often limit the sacrifices to them but what about their wives, kids and families that they need to take care of in the home front otherwise they won’t be able to concentrate on their core assignments.”

So the overriding objective of the film is to bring the sacrifices of the people in those institutions to the fore so that people can appreciate and respect them.

Recall that the Federal Government had commended Heritage Bank for its commitment to the development and growth of the creative industry at the recently concluded two-day creative Nigeria summit with the theme: Financing the Film, Television and Music Industries; which was co-sponsored by the bank.

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