The maiden edition of RIVINFO Film Competition held recently in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. A brainchild of Governor Rotimi Amaechi, the competition was designed to build a reservoir of manpower in acting, directing, script writing, cinematography and production.
Driven by the Ministry of Information and Communications, this year’s competition brought out the creative spirit and industry of the youth who jostled for prizes in different categories. According to the Commissioner of Information and Communications, Ibim Semenitari, the two best entries of the competition, Red Line and Dark Quest, which focused on the theme of illegal bunkering, were screened at Zuma International Film festival held in Abuja in May.
Overall winner, Sweetman Okujagu, Ejim Fortune Kezi, (1st position Docudrama), Bright Orgwu (2nd position Docudrama), and Ombo Ibifaa, (2nd position Documentary), all opened up to The Entertainer immediately after the award ceremony. Excerpts:
My name is Sweetman Okujagu, I am an actor, producer and director. I am the first President of Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Rivers State chapter. I have acted in so many films and I have done three movies like Lost Glory, Snake Kingdom, and Love Paradise, which I couldn’t conclude because of lack of finance. This is my first documentary.
Well, I feel very happy to be a winner. As the overall winner, my prize is N1 million. This is one of the best awards that I have ever received in my entire life. Being recognized at home by your state government is something very interesting. It is the work of God and I thank God for that.
The film that I entered for the awards is a documentary called, Redline. It is about illegal bunkering. The dangers associated with illegal bunkering. It is about 15 minutes.
The challenge that I had was actually finance. Although, the information came very late, I had to put my house in order to make sure I did the documentary. I was the last person that submitted the entry and I made it to the top. I just want to give God the glory. I believe what God said that, if you serve him diligently, He would bless and water your bread. This is what God has done for me. I thank God for that.
Sky is limit
The sky is my limit. Now that government has supported us with this finance, we are trying to see how we can make better movies in Port Harcourt. Most of the artistes have been with us. We want to make Rivers State the home of movies.