By Ayo Onikoyi
Up and rising Yoruba actress, Bukky Fagbuyi is currently embroiled in a cold war of sort with Yoruba Video Film Producers and Marketers Association (YVFPMA) led by Alhaji Abdulahi Rasaq of Corporate Pictures, over the release of her new film ‘Sekunola’. Information reaching Potpourri has it that the marketers association refused to distribute the film and asked its various distribution channels to shun having anything to do with the actress and her film.
However, the actress went on to release the film on DVD to the market on Monday, November 16, 2015 through an independent marketer, a non-member of the Yoruba Video Film Producers and Marketers Association (YVFPMA), Integrity Productions and Marketing.
Since then, speculations have run wild on social media on what went wrong between the actress and the marketers association, with much of the finger-pointing directed at the president of the association. Some have said the association is only trying to frustrate the release of the film, having failed to strike a good deal with the producer in view of the big hype that greeted the film after its successful premieres in many countries including the United States of America.
To set the record straight, Potpourri had a chat with Alhaji Abdulahi Rasaq of Corporate Pictures and President, Yoruba Video Film Producers and Marketers Association (YVFPMA).
What is the problem between Bukky Fagbuyi and Yoruba movie marketers, over the release of her film “Sekunola”?
We don’t have problems with anybody. Every association has its rule and we are not exempted. Our association protect the collective interests of our members and clients. We don’t disturb anybody from doing his or her business. I also have the constitutional right to protect the interest of my members. We have a standard rule in our association. Films must be approved by our Film Release Committee before it is released into the market and such film must be in a circular. This rule has been in existence for many years. Also, our members have been instructed not to sell films that are not in our circular. I don’t think we have done anything outside our constitution. Anyone can sell anything of his or her choice but our members are guided by our own rules and regulations and have to obey the rules of the association.
Must your association be the only one to release a film into the market?
No. Every Nigerian has the right to belong or not to belong to an association. What I have been discussing with you is the “Marketing Right”. I don’t really interfere in the business dealings between our members and their clients. But as the President of the association, my primary assignment is to protect the interest of my members and also ensure they abide by the rules of the association. I also need to stress that I can’t control or monitor the activities of a marketer who is not a member of our association. However, it is not only our members that are selling films in Nigeria. We should begin to learn to do things in the right way as Nigerians.
So, why are you boycotting marketing of her film?
My point is this, anyone who wants to release a film has to follow some rules. He or she has to apply to our Film Release Committee, who will submit the documentation to Nigeria Film Censor Board. We have to see that the person must have agreed to all our rules and regulations , when this is done, then we will put the film on the list of films to be released into the market. The point is this, a non member of an association cannot enjoy the benefits of the association. Our association is well structured. We don’t have problems with anyone releasing a film in Nigeria but if the film is to be released by a member of my association, then it has to follow our rules to the last letter. When a person is not our member, we don’t have business with that person. In fact, the film was not submitted and as such, won’t be released. We didn’t receive any application. It is not done in any part of the world. No one can enjoy benefits from an association he or she doesn’t belong to. How do you expect my members to sell your films, when you are not our member? At the same time, there is freedom of association. Even our members have to submit their films into our circular, screened and approved, before their films are released. Otherwise, other members will not market the film.