October 2, 2022

Dele Odule, Aisha Lawal, others grace maiden edition of Ibadan International Film Festival

Dele Odule, Aisha Lawal, others grace maiden edition of Ibadan International Film Festival

By Gabriel Olawale

The creme de la creme of the Nigerian Film Industry and Arts enthusiasts were in attendance to graced the maiden edition of the Ibadan International Film Festival held from 22nd to 24th September 2022 at the BUNKer, Ring Road, Ibadan, Oyo State.

The event which featured capacity building in different areas such as acting for film/TV by Ehizojie Ojesebholo (a popular film maker also known as Jimi Bendel); Light Design for Film/TV with Godwin Lawani; Cinematography for Film/TV with Charles Oleghe and Producing for Film/TV by James Omokwe and Jemila Akinwale.

The workshops dovetailed into film screenings for the officially selected films in different categories which lasted till evening.

Day 2 of the Event featured Workshops on Directing for Film/TV facilitated by Niji Akanni, Sound Design for Film/TV by Segun “Ebonie” Osisanya and The Life of Post Production by Ayodele Onyekachi Banjo. This day also showcased/screened the officially selected films which was wrapped with a fun filled Art hang Out supported by the prominent Art Curator/Collector – Prince Tunde Odunlade of Tunde Odunlade Arts and Culture Connections. it was indeed an atmosphere of music, art showcase and appreciation, fun and dance all the way.

The Final day also featured Film screenings and the grand seminar that had the top key players in the business of filmmaking in Nigeria viz: Biodun Stephen, Olaleken Wasiudeen of LibraTV, Femi Ogunsanwo and Adeleye Fabusoro of the popular family series – Awon Aladun.

The maiden edition of the highly anticipated Ibadan International Film festival (IIFF) came to a rousing close on Saturday September 24th, 2022 with its global awards ceremony that saw an impressive turn out of the industry’s finest.

The Convener, Usman “Blackky” Ogunlade ” spoke at the Award Night on the essence and necessity for the Ibadan International Film festival which in his words is long overdue.

He added “Ìbàdàn International Film Festival was born out of our own effort in putting Ibadan back to it’s old status of been the cradle of entertainment in Africa by the emergence of WNBS/WNTV that later became NTA which we can say officially gave birth to the beginning of filmmaking in this part of the world.

“Owing to this fact, we set out not for a local film festival but an International film festival cos of the status of Ibadan in the World Map, we try to create an avenue where we can bring the World to Ibadan and also take Ibadan to the World using filmmaking/entertainment, and we know that this festival will further better the way we make films in this part of the world and also will foster collaboration within and outside the country.”

The Keynote Speaker, Professor Tunji Azeez , a Professor of Theatre, Film and Cultural Studies, and former Acting Head, Department of Theatre Arts and Music, Lagos State University spoke extensively on Film Festivals across the world at the Award Night spotlighting why initiatives like the Ibadan International Film festival should receive corporate and Government supports and sponsorships.

In his Address “Any Nation, such as ours, that refuses to consciously and intentionally invest in this art form specifically, and the entire culture sector specifically, does so at its own peril. This is because, as Kolker (2006) says, ‘film is big business and its creation, its form, and its content are about power, the core of politics’. Lamentably, successive Nigerian governments have not woken up to this reality in the over 100 years of the existence of this art form and 90 years of the existence of film festival.

“So, I have to emphasis that the birth of the Ibadan International Film Festival should, and must be seen as a venture that we all, particularly the government must embrace. The government must put structures and policies in place to guarantee that it is a permanent festival. Now, let me add that beyond coming to deliver a keynote address at this maiden festival, I am a bonafide son of Oyo state with a passion for the state and the arts and culture sector generally. For this reason, I must emphasis that, if we get this right, Ibadan and Oyo state will have a cause to attract investors that will impact positively on our people and our culture.”

Winners from this epoch making event includes, Nigerian Animator/Film maker   “Tunde Oluwa” for Ami (Sign) winning Best Nigerian Film and Best Animation amongst others.

Popular French Actors and FilmMakers – Pierre Richard and Gerard Depardieu won best Supporting Male and best Actor (Male) respectively in the movie – Umami.

The Festival Director, Babatunde Ojobaro popularly known as Mister Rain also added ” You will recall that over 10000 entries were received from over 117 Countries across the world for Award in different categories which went through rigorous screening by the College of Screeners and the Panel of Jury which comprises of renowned Film Makers and Scholars within and outside Nigeria.”

Plans are already in the works for the second edition of the Ibadan International Film festival which will be communicated on the website