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Abuja International Film Festival begins tomorrow

By Guardian Nigeria
30 October 2022   |   2:50 am
The opening ceremony of Abuja International Film Festival (AIFF) holds today at the Silverbird Cinemas, Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory.

PHOTO: Niyi Akinmolayan

The opening ceremony of Abuja International Film Festival (AIFF) holds today at the Silverbird Cinemas, Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory. In its 19th edition, the festival will run from October 31 to November 3. Tagged: ‘The Digital Revolution-Harnessing The Potentials In Online Streaming And Downloads Of Content’, Festival Founder, Fidelis Duker, revealed the AIFF received a total of 1,771 films from 87 countries, while about 91 films and filmmakers respectively made the final selection. This edition, according to Festival director, Temitope Duker, will feature screenings, master classes, panel discussions, parties and the grand event of the closing night, where honours will go to deserving films and filmmakers.

Retrospective 2023 Is On ‘Young At Heart- Coming Of Age At The Movies’
THE 2023 Retrospective programme of the Berlinale takes a look back at being young and growing up under the title, ‘Young at Heart – Coming of Age at the Movies’. Curated by Dr Rainer Rother, head of the Retrospective and artistic director of the Deutsche Kinemathek, and his team, the section breaks new ground by inviting noted film directors, actors, and screenwriters to shape the programme line-up. Rother said: “In this day and age, what with climate change, the pandemic, and war, the young generation is facing fear, doubt, and an uncertain future. Cinema – as a cultural institution also influx – provides a place to meet and to illustrate ideas for shaping the future, because films and experiencing them on the big screen, can give us a foothold and a sense of orientation. They can imagine freedom and convey ideals, evoke deep feelings, create communities, and leave life-long impressions. All in all, good reasons to honour coming of age with the Berlinale Retrospective.” Some 30 filmmakers will choose their personal favourite ‘coming of age’ film for the Retrospective programme.

The directors, screenwriters and actors have, thus, far accepted the festivals invitation to help configure this unusual film series include, Maren Ade, Pedro Almodóvar, Wes Anderson, Juliette Binoche, Lav Diaz, Alice Diop, Ava DuVernay, Nora Fingscheidt, Luca Guadagnino, Ryūsuke Hamaguchi, and Ethan Hawke. “After two years of the pandemic, we all feel like a character in a coming-of-age film. We aren’t what we used to be any more, and we don’t know yet what we will be. The good thing that these movies do is to turn uncertainty into a sense of excitement for what might come. That is the feeling we want to evoke with this project. We are grateful to the artists whose selections will shape this unique project,” comments Berlinale Artistic Director Carlo Chatrian. The complete line-up and the list of artists who are participating in choosing the films will be published in January 2023.

Realness Institute, Netflix Partner For 2023 Episodic Lab And DET Programmes
REALNESS Institute in partnership with Netflix, the world’s leading entertainment streaming service, has opened the calls for submissions to its 2023 Episodic Lab and Development Executive Traineeship (DET) programmes, which will hold from April 30 to July 30, 2023. The Lab and Traineeship aim to support screenwriters and mid-career industry professionals from Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya who are seeking opportunities to develop their original story ideas in any genre and are looking to enhance their skills as story consultants respectively. Bringing together a wealth of creative talent from Africa in these programmes, Realness Institute offers the Episodic Lab participants the opportunity to pitch their incubated stories to Netflix executives at the end of the programme.

It also offers DET participants a deeper understanding of the story development process, exposure to a more nuanced approach in the support of writers whilst simultaneously holding writers accountable for their creative work.  “We are delighted that Netflix has once again partnered with us, to bring these two symbiotic programmes for African filmmakers in our joint quest to grow African stories and content on the continent,’’ said Mehret Mandefro, Director of Development and Partnerships, Realness Institute. While there is no guarantee that any proposal will be developed further by Netflix, it is a unique opportunity to interface at key milestones with Netflix executives and be afforded the opportunity to pitch.

Commenting on Netflix’s partnership with Realness Institute, Allison Triegaardt, Manager for GROW Creative Africa at Netflix said the streaming giant is thrilled to be continuing the partnership with Realness Institute, noting that it provides such a great opportunity to find, grow and nurture African filmmakers by giving them the time and resources they need to realize their vision and someday share their stories with a global audience. The Lab and Traineeship hold online and then for a week in-person in July 2023 at the Coot Club in Stanford, Western Cape. Interested participants are encouraged to visit: for Episodic Lab programme application and for Development Executive Traineeship programme application and wait to be shortlisted. Application submissions opened October 26 and will close on December 22, 2022.