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Africa Subsaharan
Boko Haram gets Nollywood treatment
2013-07-06
[GUARDIAN.CO.UK] It's a tried and tested formula for smash-hit Hollywood cinema: faceless myrmidons plotting mass destruction only to be foiled by a mixture of fate and law enforcement -- with a good love story thrown in to boot.

Now Nollywood, Nigeria's burgeoning film industry, has got in on the action, making the country's Islamic bad turban sect the subject of a new release, Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
-- the movie.

The film follows the story of a young man who comes to Lagos with a secret mission to detonate a bomb that will kill 2,500 people. But in an unlikely twist he meets a hooker who prompts a rethink.

"It's a film about a terrorist who finds love and has to challenge everything he has been taught," said Pascal Amanfo, who wrote and directed the film. "We wanted to delve into the core of this issue, challenging people's ideals and beliefs.

"I think we are pushing the limits of Nigerian films," Amanfo added. "But ultimately we focused on a love story and trying to provoke some kind of sentiment in your average Nigerian viewer."

The film, released earlier this year in Nigeria and soon to be released in Ghana, is not without controversy. Amanfo said he had to change the name from Boko Haram to Nation Under Siege for the film's domestic release, due to Nigerians' heightened sensitivity on the topic.

"There has been so much controversy surrounding this movie," said Amanfo. "My marketer in America backed down on marketing it -- he said the very sight of the poster provokes too much strong feeling. I could not get cinema showings in Nigeria because of the reaction, and we had to be careful to avoid a backlash from the government. The Nigerian market would not accept the title Boko Haram, people said it would cause a war, so we tried to soften it a little."

In Ghana, where the film is still titled Boko Haram, critics said the poster -- depicting the fair-skinned Ghanaian actor Majid Michel wearing a turban and holding an AK47 -- pandered to stereotypes about terrorism in the region.

"The poster looks like a guy in Arab garb with a gun. What does that have to do with Boko Haram?" said Kobina Graham, a lecturer and cultural critic in Ghana. "My understanding is that Boko Haram doesn't have anything to do with Arab guys with guns. This says a lot more about our stereotypes than anything else."
Posted by:Fred

#1  Good days fine sirs:
I am at your service Pascal Amanfo Fosse. A famous director in Nollywood and have made plenty movies. I have a new famous property that is just right for your investment which will return a minimum of 92% per annum into the perpetuity. It is about a khat chewing h*t Han Solo who has come to Lagos to make the film. It's working title is "All That Jedi" it would be good for you to send me a (real) cashiers check in the form of 1 million American to get on ground floor.

Major prosperity to us boths.
Kindest regards to your cheese.
Pascal Amanfo Fosse (esq.)
Posted by: Shipman   2013-07-06 06:01  

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