Felicite, the puzzling, heartfelt music heavy drama directed by Senegalese filmmaker Alan Gomis closed the 2017 edition of the Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF). Attending the closing ceremony were superstar guests Sambassa Nzeribe, Kunle Idowu, Hilda Dokubo, Chioma Chukwuka-Akpotha, Charles Novia and Mahmood Ali-Balogun.
Felicite which won the Jury Grand Prix award at the Berlin International Film Festival and was victorious at the Africa Movie Academy Award (AMAA) with wins in six categories including Best Actress for lead, Véro Tshanda Beya Mputu, follows a single mother battling to save the life and limb of her son who was involved in a motorbike accident.
Following the screening, the festival train moved to BNatural spa, in Victoria Island for an after party which had the stars mingle with members of the jury as well as members of the film community.
Prior to closing night, the Access Bank sponsored Accelerate Filmmaker Project Session hosted by Lala Akindoju presented the five shortlisted films made by finalists of the project, following mentorship sessions with industry heavyweights like Seyi Babatope, Mildred Okwo and Niyi Akinmolayan. Priye Diri’s xoxo Leo, a silent short about infidelity, loss and betrayal emerged winner.
Access Bank also facilitated a panel discussion on technology driven by entertainment with Ntel, Cisco and 9Mobile. Cisco introduced nVivo TV, a new OTT streaming video service offering access to Nollywood and international video content on mobile devices.
Bikiya Graham Douglas moderated a panel discussion on production and distribution of African content involving Kunle Afolayan, Alain Modot (MD, DIFFA), David Kessler (MD, Studio Orange). The panelists offered their ideas on ways and means of distributing content and pointed towards creative collaborations across cultures as the future.
Short films, Las Gidi Vice directed by Udoka Onyeka and Armstrong helmed by Omoruyi Irabor were screened at the Genesis Deluxe Cinemas while the feature length, Rotiplayed at the Silverbird Cinemas.
Adeolu Adeniyi photography – @adeoluadeniyiphotography