REMARKS BY THE CONSUL-GENERAL ON NOLLYWOOD MOVIE SCREENING
REMARKS BY HON. GEOFFERY I. TENEILABE, CONSUL-GENERAL OF NIGERIA, ATLANTA, ON THE OCCASION OF THE SCREENING OF THE NIGERIAN MOVIE ‘MEMORIES OF THE HEART’, A PROGRAMME OF NEW MEDIA NOLLYWOOD IN COOPERATION WITH FUTURE MEDIA FEST. ATLANTA, NOVEMBER 16, 2011.Distinguished ladies and Gentlemen.Good evening. I feel a sense of honour to welcome you to this special occasion,marking another watershed in the mutually beneficial relationshipbetween Nigeria and the United States.2. On this note, I am delighted to express kind gratitude to theorganizers of the event, for their remarkable initiative, efforts and driveto ensure the success of this event. I also wish to thank the greatNollywood cultural Ambassadors present here with us, whoseperformances and talents on the screen have helped to tell theNigerian story around the world. It is my desire that they would strikethe right cords with their American counterparts, to build partnershipsof enduring business relationships.3. Nollywood is the world’s second largest film industry, especially interms of films produced each year, next to Indian Bollywood and aheadof the American Hollywood. It is certainly the largest in Africa. As anemergent and fast growing industry, with high capacity foremployment, Nigerian movie industry, at an estimated value of $500million, is undoubtedly, a revenue spinner waiting to be tapped further.It is, therefore, no coincident that this partnership is coming at a time
Nollywood has become Nigeria’s new bride waiting to be courted bysuitors.4. However, though ahead of the United States Hollywood,Nollywood is still miles away from the technological sophistication ofthe American film industry. The future of the Nigerian film industry isintricately woven around its advancement in technologies that wouldensure advancement of its status as ‘Home Movies’ to aninternationally competitive industry, with the capacity to maximize itspotentials.5. Taking that into account, the collaborative partnership betweenthe Georgia Institute of Technology and Nollywood, and between theUnited States and Nigeria, is an awakening likely to define the future ofcinema and motion picture in the 21st century. It is hoped that thepartnership would develop to a marriage between talent andtechnology, between history and modernity, and between cultures oftwo civilizations. This marriage, if nurtured, would likely create themost elaborate market for the most balanced movies in the world,where the language of communication would have more universalappeal.6. I must not fail to point out that the collaboration being witnessedtoday is largely a product of the encouragement of the NigerianAdministration under President Goodluck Jonathan, which seeks toexpand the space for Nigeria’s non-oil foreign business partnerships inthe areas of investment, culture, agriculture, solid minerals,communication, infrastructure, energy, etc. I assure you that as agentsof that government, the Consulate is open to facilitate the objectives ofthe Nollywood dream.
7. It is my hope, therefore, that all of us gathered here tonight,would continue to be part of the unfolding history, leading to theemergence of more collaborative movies involving Nollywood andHollywood stars, increased choice of Nigerian locations for Americanmovies and the enjoyment of abundance of nature, promotion andmarketing of Nigerian movies in the U.S.A. as well as the establishmentof American production studios in Nigeria.8. It is similarly my hope that the panel discussions that would followthe screening of the ‘Memories of the Heart’ will offer moreopportunity for deeper reflections that would help our collectiveendeavours.9. Thank you for your kind attention and have a pleasant evening. * * *