Birthplace of Cinema Welcomes Nollywood from May 30 to June 2 2013

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Immediately following Cannes, France will lay out the red carpet for Nigerian filmmakers in an effort to build a lasting bridge between Francophone audiences and the Nigerian film industry powerhouse.  The first annual NollywoodWeek Paris Film Festival is set to take place in the heart of Paris at l’Arlequin Theatre from May 30 to June 2 2013. The event’s Executive Director, Serge Noukoué, has high aspirations for the project, saying, “Bringing the second largest film industry to the country that invented cinema simply makes sense.”  Indeed, the Nigerian film industry rivals only India’s Bollywood in terms of annual film production, producing roughly 1,000 movies each year.  Many of these films are shot on a shoe-string budget and completely ‘in the can’ within one week but the festival aims to provide a platform for those gems within the rubble to shine. “Nollywood has come a long way in its short lifetime and directors are creating movies with real African stories that can be enjoyed by global audiences” explains Noukoué. Complete with its own A-list movie stars and movie award ceremonies, Nollywood filmmakers have also begun to catch the attention of Hollywood in recent years.  Yet, Nollywood remains largely unknown in many circles due to the challenges that the 21-year old industry faces.  YK Projects, the Franco-Nigerian non-profit association responsible for NollywoodWeek Paris, hopes to address those issues as well as create synergies between France and Nigeria.  In addition to seven of Nollywood’s best recent films selected to screen at the festival, organizers have planned panel discussions, special events, and a marketplace for producers and buyers to exchange. Media organizations and government institutions such as the French Consulate of Lagos, the Nigerian Embassy in Paris, Courrier International, Bella Naija, and Radio Nova are but a few organizations that have already partnered with NollywoodWeek to bring the film festival to fruition. Not only will the festival’s content be original, but so is its funding. In keeping with the spirit of Nollywood, a crowd-funding campaign was launched: http://igg.me/at/nwp to encourage the global community to contribute to its realization. NollywoodWeek Paris wants the 62 million inhabitants of France to also share in this thriving film movement.

 

 

NollywoodWeek Paris is co-founded by a diverse and young team of individuals: Serge Noukoué, Qudus Onikeku, Nadira Shakur, Hajarat Alli and Shari Hammond. For more information about NollywoodWeek Parisserge nw

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