Arts  

Awaiting Second Coming Of Living In Bondage

Ambassador of Czech Republic to Nigeria, Mr. Pavel Mikes (left); German Ambassador, Mr. Michael Zenner; DG, Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mrs. Sally Mbanefo; former governor of Abia State, Chief Orji Uzor Kalu; Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Tourism, Culture & National Orientation, Nkechi Ejele; Chinese Ambassador, Mr. Gu Xiojie; DG, National Gallery of Art (NGA), Abdullahi Muku and South Korean Ambassador, Mr. Noh Kyu-Duk at the recent opening of Art of Friendship 111 organized by NGA  at FCT Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja, featuring art works from Nigeria, Czech Republic, Germany, China and South Korea 

Ambassador of Czech Republic to Nigeria, Mr. Pavel Mikes (left); German Ambassador, Mr. Michael Zenner; DG, Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mrs. Sally Mbanefo; former governor of Abia State, Chief Orji Uzor Kalu; Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Tourism, Culture & National Orientation, Nkechi Ejele; Chinese Ambassador, Mr. Gu Xiojie; DG, National Gallery of Art (NGA), Abdullahi Muku and South Korean Ambassador, Mr. Noh Kyu-Duk at the recent opening of Art of Friendship 111 organized by NGA  at FCT Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja, featuring art works from Nigeria, Czech Republic, Germany, China and South Korea

IN 1992, when Kenneth Nnebue took the risk of assembling a team to produce Living in Bondage, which was shot straight-to-video, little did he know that the venture would set the tone for what is known today as Nollywood.

Written by Kenneth Nnebue and Okechukwu Ogunjiofor and directed by Chris Obi Rapu, the drama thriller, which paraded the likes of Kenneth Okonkwo, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Francis Agu, Bob-Manuel Udokwu, Ngozi Nwosu, Ngozi Nwaneto and others, who are currently active in the industry, though produced in Igbo language, was well received across the country not minding its shortcomings.

But Nollywood has grown tremendously over the years; themes have changed, in-depth storylines are explored, actors have become more professional and quality of film has greatly improved. Today, Nollywood film is no longer ‘wait and take’ affair; there has been tremendous improvement, especially in the area of enlightenment for the audience, who use Hollywood as a yardstick to measure growth of the industry.

Today, what started like a cottage industry has become a major income earner for the country, with locally produced movies making waves at international film festivals and awards. Movie budgets now gulp millions of naira and dollars, unlike in the past where films were done on a low budget.

About 23 years after Living In Bondage hit movie shelf, award winning Nollywood Star Ramsey Nouah is collaborating Charles Okpaleke’s Play Entertainment Network to produce a sequel of the epic movie.

On his decision to remake Living In Bondage, Ramsey, who is an advocate for New Nollywood explained, “There is no way you will mention Nollywood without talking about Living in Bondage; it set the tone for the industry I work in today. It’s ability to appeal to everyone irrespective of their religious, cultural and social beliefs made it a huge success; it addressed issues that we couldn’t talk about then. Even when the language was understood by a certain part of the country, yet was watched by many. So, why not bring back this great movie in our contemporary world,” he quizzed.

According to the actor, Living In Bondage is a delight any day, adding that, “People will still talk about the way Andy (Kenneth Okonkwo) killed his wife for money rituals and how he was tormented. Don’t forget the likes of Kanayo O. Kanayo and Bob Manuel Udokwu, who intrigued us with their roles in the movie. All these made the movie a great hit and we are sure that the sequel will do better.”
he informed that his partner in the project, Charles Okpaleke, has already bought the rights from Kenneth Nnebue, who wrote the movie, which is estimated to gulp millions of naira, with a robust cast.

Lamenting the obvious financial challenges facing filmmakers in this part of the world, Ramsey noted that, “Our industry is growing; we are still not there. The structure is still lacking, but we can start up somewhere. If we can get investors from the private sector and government to boost this industry, our GDP will skyrocket. There is no doubt that we are the highest employer of labour at the moment.”

He also stated that, while it is important that producers and directors are aiming to get Hollywood standards in their productions, it is imperative that our cultures should be celebrated, He emphasizing the need to produce indigenous films that will export our culture to other parts of the world.

For Okpaleke, having the rights to produce the sequel to Living In Bondage is a huge milestone.
“It’s not often that we visit our roots and bring the story in our present situation. Living in Bondage may have its flaws then, but bringing those characters back to our present situation is really interesting and I’m sure will spark up public discourse that will perhaps engineer growth and development in the industry.”

Meanwhile, plans have reached advanced stage to ensure that the production will not only be a smooth sail, but will also record huge sales in the box office.

Receive News Alerts on Whatsapp: +2348136370421


No Comments yet

Related