As Nigeria marks her 53rdIndependence anniversary, Don Pedro Aganbi, Chairman, Actors Guild of Nigeria – Lagos State Chapter has said that the democratic dispensation has been fair to the nation’s movie industry, Nollywood.
He made this remarks at the 2013 Lagos Actors Week. According to the AGN Lagos chapter boss, during the dark days of the military Nollywood did not experience much progress due to the ban of cinema screenings. “But democracy has been quiet fair to Nollywood, because apart from the boom in Movies, our colleagues are now getting Government appointments which are signs that we are getting the confidence of government and making progress. But the movie industry needs to look more inward now than ever because as we speak there is no proper structure and support system for Nollywood. It’s a wake-up call” he posited
Aganbi also noted that the N3 billion grants by President Goodluck Jonathan during the celebration of Nollywood at 20 in April, 2013 were also applauded by many Nigerians. The way things are going most of the Guilds, Associations and Movie producers, Scriptwriters may not access the funds due to lack of structures within the system.
In addition, the AGN Lagos Chairman also said that like in a horror movie, the toddler film market was gruesomely butchered at the altar of the oil boom together with other sectors of the economy. The Indigenization Decree of 1972, which sought to transfer ownership of about 300 cinema houses in the country from their foreign proprietors to Nigerians, did little to help matters, Though it was the transfer that resulted in the explosion of the resourcefulness of Nigerian playwrights, screenwriters, poets, and film producers, the gradual dip in the value of the naira, combined with lack of finance, marketing support, quality studio and production equipment as well as inexperience on the part of practitioners, which hampered the growth of the local film industry. We should not allow history to repeat itself if Nollywood must continue to be a driver for economic growth and National transformation.
The Lagos Actors Week which is organised annually by Actors Guild of Nigeria-Lagos State Chapter is a platform for the government, private sector, business community and foreign missions to chart a course for the future of the Nigerian actor.