Lagos is set for a harvest of the best of African films, as the 5th edition of the popular Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF) kicks off this Sunday in the nation’s entertainment hub, rotating screenings from Silverbird Galleria, Victoria Island, City Mall Cinema, Onikan and Genesis Duluxe, Lekki.
The event which holds from November 8 to 15, 2015, is expected to feature some of the best exports from the continent, while celebrating the auteurs whose films have been celebrated on the global stage such as Festival de Cannes, France; Berlinale, Germany and Venice International Film Festival among others.
Organizers of AFRIFF are of the view that the festival, being domiciled in Nigeria, will afford Nollywood the opportunity of sharing artistic and business ideas with filmmakers from other African countries for possible collaborations.
Meanwhile, Nigerian movie buffs will have a refreshing experience viewing films from other clans; most of them politically and economically motivated.
“Films are documentaries of the life and history of a people. The things you read in the papers or see on TV about the situations in Egypt, Syria, Mali, Iran, and South Africa for example are better reflected, as captured by filmmakers from these countries,” said Afie Braimoh, AFRIFF’s Director of Operations.
She announced that these films come free-of-charge to the public, who are merely enjoined by AFRIFF to register on www.afriff.com or at the venue of their choice, prior to the screenings of the films.
“Details of the film schedules are already on the website. Those interested would only need to check titles and the venue that is closer to them. It’s a bumper harvest, as we have about 180 films from Africa and the Diaspora,” said Festival Manager, Ikenna Ezenyirioha.
AFRIFF’s highlights this year include Jonas Carpignano’s Mediterranea, a film about capital flight, as the opening film, while Road To Yesterday, the highly anticipated feature film debut by Nollywood diva, Genevieve Nnaji will close the festival. Among other top films from Africa and the Diaspora will be Ayanda, a South African film featuring our own OC Ukeje, with a special screening during the South African Day at the festival.
Aside from the glamour that resonates with the stars whose films will be shown at these festivals, the initiative also provides a platform for thought-provoking discourses, master classes and networking.
Film journalists too, for the first time will share in the experience, not just as spectators and reporters, but as participants in a series of workshops that will improve their reportorial skills, and launch them into the world of international film critics.
With about 139 films in competition, the actors and filmmakers will share in the spotlight of a closing ceremony that rewards excellence. The glory of the night will not just be about the plaques and prize money, but a testament of the best from the year in review, coming from high profile jurors.