Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s quest to build a world-class film village in Asaba, the state capital, has received praise from the Nigerian Film Producers Association.
The group, which was on a courtesy visit to the governor at the Asaba Government House, said on Friday they were in the state for its annual general meeting.
The group’s president, Ralph Nwadike, in his comment said that movie producers were delighted with the world-class movie village that the Delta state government is building in Asaba.
He said Nollywood can now proudly declare Asaba home.
“We have been in the Asaba Film Village project and now we can say with body that we have a home and a base here in Asaba. I congratulate you, Mr. Governor, with all your enthusiasm and enthusiasm, because we are indeed reaching the promised land. I say this in all seriousness because wherever we go around the world as filmmakers, we are asked where exactly Nollywood is.
“Nollywood started from Zeb Ejiro’s office, but there is no place to say that this is Nollywood like Bollywood and Hollywood have it in India and the United States. So going to the movie village of Asaba will be our own land of Canaan. It is a promised land, it is not just a Nollywood town, it is a place we can call home and we are very proud of what Governor Okowa is doing there.
“The importance of all this is economic growth, our restless young people will be taken off the street and now they will have something to do. Indeed, it is a huge place and creative arena where everyone in the film industry will find something to do.
“We thank you because before now, successive governments of not just Delta but virtually every place promised to take Nollywood to heaven, but we are still here on earth. In fact, this is a promise kept by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and we are very happy and proud to be a part of this project.
The president of the Association’s Board of Trustees, Chief Zeb Ejiro, praised the governor for embarking on the film village project.
“We have toured Asaba and we have seen the good works that you are doing. You are the first governor of this country to build a movie village and by the grace of God, the Film Producers Association will be here to celebrate with you during the inauguration.
“It will create massive employment and solve crime because it will take many young people off the street. Tourism is one of the world’s largest sources of income and, as film producers, we identify with its dream of making Delta the leading film hub in West Africa and when this location is completed it will attract world-class studios that they will come to collaborate with us here. .
“As the largest film producers in Nigeria and the largest employers of labor in the film industry, we look for the opportunity to work with you on this project and integrate into your tourism potentials so that together we can make Delta the center of the industry. cinematographic. in West Africa. “he said.
For his part, the Chairman of the Directors Guild of Nigeria (DGN), Fred Amata, said the film village will boost the productivity of film directors.
“In terms of creativity, Film Village will boost our productions, especially by having the opportunity to recreate anything the mind can conjure up, and that alone is a huge boost to what it takes to achieve the creative side of film-making.
“Nigerians are known to travel abroad like South Africa in search of high-tech and multi-technology support, but this is going to be here at our doorstep and for the projection and evolution of the industry, this is very timely.
“The industry has been evolving and this is giving new life to the industry and we are being reborn. Now we can say that Nollywood is in Asaba because it will have the availability of technology that includes high-end equipment, high-end production facilities, among others.
“We are particularly happy to have everything gathered in one place, this has been a great challenge and we have been crying about this. Now the vision is clear and I could see the tremendous work that is going on there. In fact, it is a vision for Nigeria, West Africa and Africa and this alone is a great recognition to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and all who work with him to achieve this feat. “
Okowa in her comment thanked the film producers for returning home to contribute to the development of the state.
He assured that his administration will partner with them to make Delta a tourist destination.
“Let me welcome all of you to Delta and express my excitement that you are primarily Deltans because delta have done so much in the film and entertainment industry.
“We thank you for coming home to make your choices and having contributed so much to Delta. I’m glad you went to the Village movie that is taking place next to an amusement park.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the pace at which we intended to work on that and we could have done better than it is now, but hopefully it will be completed next year.
“We are aware that most of the films in Nigeria are shot in Delta and Asaba with precision. The importance of the entertainment industry in job creation and economic development for Delta State cannot be overemphasized.
“We will create a functional film village and eventually partner with the private sector to manage the film village. I welcome them to Delta and wish them the best in their choices. ” he affirmed.