Why we financed ‘Isoken’ movie
For a relatively new filmmaker to secure the Bank of Industry (BoI)’s loan to shoot a movie, her presentation must have struck the right chord. This is the story of Jadesola Osiberu, a young producer whose soon-to-be-released first feature film, ‘Isoken’, has stirred the bank up so much that they may open their doors to her again.
Speaking at the media unveiling of the movie, Head of Creative Banking Group, Bank of Industry, Mrs. Cynthia Uche Nwuka noted that Osiberu was the first young filmmaker the bank was working with, adding that there was no regret even though the film is yet to be released.
She said: “At BOI, we are very passionate about working with young filmmakers and Jade Osiberu was the first of such. With BOI buying into her passion and commitment to story-telling through film, we are happy with what we’ve seen today and equally proud to be affiliated with this project.”
The cinemas have been abuzz with high budget Nigerian films since the bank made debut with the loan scheme called NollyFund. Among the films produced through the scheme so far include pan-African film, ‘The CEO’ by Kunle Afolayan; period movie, ‘Amina’ by Okey Ogunjiofor; ‘Ayamma’ by Emem Isong; comic flick, ‘Three Wise Men’ by Opa Williams and ‘Stella and Oba’ by Lasun Ray, currently shooting in Ilorin, Kwara State.
Nwuka said the bank was proud to fill the gap that exists in the creative sector through NollyFund. For the producer of ‘Isoken’, she said: “The first gap was the financial need. She had the budget and she didn’t have enough funding. So, she needed to fill that gap and that was how BoI came in. The other part of it has to do with the story. To me, when we first heard of the title, we thought to ourselves, can we sell this through the cinemas? But after the first experience with Jade, I looked forward to seeing the actual production. But we saw the message. That message is what I want you to see, in order to actually confirm what I saw the day she presented it to me.”
Thus, a bit of the movie was screened to the media, receiving great applause.Starring Dakore Akande, Funke Akindele, Bolanle Olukanni, Joseph Benjamin, Tina Mba, Damilola Attoh, Lydia Forson and Patrick Doyle among others, ‘Isoken’ takes the audience on a romantic and hilarious journey, as it explores cultural expectations, racial stereotypes and bonds that unite families.
Written, produced and directed by Jadesola, ‘Isoken’ is coming on the heels of the success of popular television and web drama series, ‘Gidi Up’, created by Jadesola.
Also commenting on the movie, billed to be released on June 16, 2017, former Managing Director, Daily Times Nigeria, and the executive producer of the movie, Dr. Yemi Ogunbiyi, said “The Nigerian film industry is growing and the growth is even more evident in the works put out by young filmmakers like Jade, who is passionate and has remained focused. So it was important to give her all the necessary support.”
As the former head of Ndani TV, Jadesola, Harvard Business School alumnus nurtured productions like ‘The Juice’, ‘Skinny Girl in Transit’, ‘Rumours Has It’ and ‘Gidi Up’, Ndani TV’s original series that secured a nomination in the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCAs) in 2015.
Speaking on her character, Dakore said, “’Isoken’ is not just a movie, it’s the story of our lives as a people of culture and norm, but ultimately, in this movie, ‘Isoken’ has to decide for herself and follow her heart – no matter where it takes her”.