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AFRIFF at 10, set to train 1,000 youths in filmmaking

By Ngozi Egenuka
13 October 2021   |   2:58 am
With talent development at its core, Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF) has committed to training 1,000 youths across Africa on filmmaking and content creation.

With talent development at its core, Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF) has committed to training 1,000 youths across Africa on filmmaking and content creation.

Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF)


Executive Director, AFRIFF, Chioma Ude, noted that the festival, for the past 10 years, has worked on developing an indigenous film industry whose products can compete favourably in the international space.

She said this year’s festival is dedicated to Africans for Africans, “those who enable us to dream and to celebrate storytelling, which challenges society. I am also very excited to announce that we will dedicate a day to anime and gaming to continue our vibrancy and innovation. We will continue to focus our efforts on training and supporting more filmmakers than ever before, as well as building global bridges, and promoting further cross-cultural exchanges.”

Access Bank, U.S. Diplomatic Mission Nigeria, Konga, Afreximbank, Landmark, Pan African Capital, Pernod Ricard and Filmhouse Group are sponsors of this year’s AFRIFF.

According to her, the festival, which will be held from November 7 to 13 at Filmhouse Cinemas, Landmark Retail Village, opens with Michael Pearce’s eagerly anticipated sci-fi thriller, Encounter, which stars Emmy award winner and Oscar and Golden Globe nominee Riz Ahmed and Oscar-Winning actress, Octavia Spencer.

“The festival will then close with Bolanle Austin Peters’ Collision. A heart-thumping story, that explores the seedy underbelly of rogue law enforcement officers and the atrocious results as they collide head-on with a frustrated young man and a conflicted member of the police force,” she said.

Ude noted that the festival received over 4,000 submissions from at least 100 countries, the highest so far, and would screen almost 150 projects, including features, shorts, documentaries and much more.

Singer and Songwriter, Sidney Esiri, popularly known as Dr Sid, speaking on gaming and animation, said the communities are closely related, adding that there is a big gap in animation content in Africa. This is the reason the festival has included a training session on animation.

According to him, there are over 44 million active gamers in Nigeria and viewership of 961,000 people watching sporting content.

He noted that the best 25 students in the animation training would receive funding from sponsors to be able to make their own films. He also added that Disney has also reached out to work with the first 15.

The actress Lala Akindoju stressed the importance of the panel sessions and workshops that would be held at the festival.

“The industry sessions and workshops provide an opportunity to network, create and sign deals. The sessions would capture conversations around the industry and the stories that have been told. Acting classes, experimental filmmaking sessions, is also part of the lineup for the festival,” she said.