Thousands of African filmmakers and stars stormed Lagos last Sunday for the opening ceremony of this year’s edition of the prestigious Africa International Film Festival, AFRIFF, which ends tomorrow with an award night.
The 7-day event witnessed series of screening of movies, workshops, seminars and networking.
While feature films, documentary and short films were all screened at Genesis Deluxe cinemas, Lekki, workshop and seminars were held at Silverbird Galleria, Victoria Island and City Mall, in Onikan.
Eko Hotel lobby was a bevy of activities as movie stars were all over the place, networking and partying all-night.
Screening of the opening film, Jonas Carpignano’s “Mediterranean” at Genesis cinema,The Palms, Lekki set the tone for this year’s festival. Joining their counterparts, the stars looked ravishing as they walked the red carpet at The Palms, posing for shots, and granting interviews. Some of them dressed to kill, from Rita Dominic to Ini Edo, Uru Eke, Toni Tones, it was a night of fashion and style. In attendance were Mahmoud Ali-Balogun, Mildred Okwo, Rita Dominic, Ure Eke, Grace Oboba Edwin-Okon, O. C. Ukeje, Ramsey Nouah, Ugeze J. Ugeze, Ini Edo, Kemi Lala Akindoju, Dakore Egbuson Akande and Kunle Afolayan.
According to the organizers, filmmakers from 35 African countries and 25 non-African countries attended this year’s festival.
The festival continued on Monday, with the industry sessions, workshops and screenings which held at different venues. Also, one of the highpoint of the festival criticism workshop – The Entertainment Writers Series, which had film critic, Muritala Sule and former Sunday Editor of The Guardian, Jahman Ankulapo as resource persons.
Meanwhile, speaking during the week, AFRIFF founder, Chioma Ude, described the festival as the next big thing to happen to African film sector.
“There is a film festival right now and it’s growing. But I see beyond that. I see a film market, I see a content production. I see development. We train a lot of young adults and we’re trying to bridge the gap already. I see advancement.” Five years after, AFRIFF has become a hub for African film practitioners. This year is a huge year for us. We have attained a lot of credibility. We’re set to be the most vibrant film festival,”,” Ude said.
countries and 25 non-African countries.