By Benjamin Njoku
Nollywood actress, Ini Edo and her Ghanaian counterpart, Jocelyn Dumas are once again set to battle for the Best Actress category in this year’s edition of the prestigious African Movie Academy Award, AMAA.
Ini and Dumas are among the five actresses that were nominated for the award at the nominations gala night which held last weekend in Los Angeles, United States. Others nominees include, Lesliana Pereira(Njnga:Queen of Angola), Queen Nwokoye(Cheetenah), and Aida Wang(Juliet and Romeo).
The two leading actresses are nominated for their roles in “While You Slept and Silver Rain.” They were also nominated in the same category last year.
Interestingly, as announced by the 2015 AMAA Jury chaired by the Zimbabwean, Mr. Keith Shiri’s Nigeria, South Africa, Ethiopia, Angola and Mauritius are leading the pack in the numbers of films from the countries in competition while United States led the pack in the films from the Africans in Diaspora.
Films from Nigerian film makers such as “October 1”, “Cheetanah, Iyore”, “Dazzling Mirage” are very prominent on the nominations list while Triangle Going to America from Ethiopia, Timbuktu from Mauritius and Queen of Angola from Angola are very strong in various categories of the award.
Two new revelations in the Most Promising Actor/Actress category are Demola Adedoyin for his role in Kunle Afolayan’s October 1 and Kemi Lala Akindoju for her role in Tunde Kelani’s Dazzling Mirage.
Announcing the nominees at the event which was attended by the cream of top Hollywood filmmakers and their Nigerian counterparts, the Chairman of the College of Screeners and member of the Jury, Mr. Shaibu Husseini noted the improvement in the quality of films coming to AMAA every year since inception 11 years ago.
‘’It is gratifying to note that filmmakers from the continent and beyond are investing more into their trade and the evidence of their investments are the quality films we see even though there will always be room for improvements,” said Mr. Husseini while giving details of the nominations.
Some of the Nollywood practitioners who attended the event and other African counterparts were Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Faithia Balogun,O.C Ukeje, Patience Uzokwor, Kingsley Ogoro, Paul Okoli, Chioma Chukwuka, Kunle Afolayan, Emem Isong, Doris Simon, Eniola Badmus, Aki and Paw Paw, and Ghana-born Lydia Forson, who is also AMAA brand ambassador
The Chief Executive Officer of AMAA, Dayo Ogunyemi said that the leadership of the award body decided to take the nominations event to Hollywood this year to begin the concrete step of taking African cinema to the home of global cinema for a mutually and economically viable cooperation.
It will be recalled that the AMAA 2015 College of Screeners received over 800 entries from over 50 countries of the world within and outside Africa covering feature films, short films, animations and documentaries. AMAA main event which is the award night will hold in South Africa in September and it will be the first time the continental awards will take place outside Nigeria in its 11 years having held 10 previous editions in Nigeria.