By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act July 11, 2013 at 11:12AM
Nigerian producer-director, Kunle Afolayan in currently in production on his next movie, titled October 1.
Produced by his Golden Effects production company, on a reported $2 million budget, the film is set in 1960, against the backdrop of Nigeria's independence, and is said to be a serial killer movie.
Written by Tunde Babalola, here's how it's describes it:
... a psychological thriller detailing the activities of a northern police detective, Dan Waziri who was posted to the western region to unravel the mystery behind a series of female murders in the community. He soon discovers that the prime suspect is Aderopo, the prince of the community. Waziri, however does not have plenty of time as he is expected to bring the Prince to book before the Nigerian flag is raised on October 1.
When we last reported on the project, director Afolayan was trying to secure a foreign co-producer outside of Nigeria, to better his international chances, stating...
"It is difficult to get a mainstream distribution deal, no matter how fantastic your film is, because it's a cartel, it's a clique... If you don't belong, it's tough."
It's a new face for Nigerian cinema (Nollywood) when international co-production deals are being sought (a trend we've written about in the recent past), in an industry that has long been almost entirely self-reliant in both the production and distribution of its movies.
I remember a previous post in which we announced that Afolayan was planning an international collaboration (his first) for something titled Dead Alive. It's not clear if this is the same project, but with a different title.
In an interview, Afolayan added that Dead Alive will be something totally different from anything he's ever done, as he collabs, for the first time, with producers and production companies from outside Nigeria, as well as an international cast of actors.
My research revealed that one actor he was chasing earlier this year (although it's not clear if it was for this project) was Danny Glover.
He also added that he thinks it's the film that will get him "there" - "there" being, a film that can compete on the international cinema stage, and that, as he boldly claimed, could get Oscar nominations.
No word on Glover's interest; although he's been very generous with Diaspora projects recently, and it wouldn't be a surprise if he's later announced to be involved. Although his name isn't on the poster below.
Afolayan's last film, the romantic-comedy Phone Swap, a film we covered, screened internationally, in 2012.
And the film he made before that, the thriller, Araromire (The Figurine), which was once dubbed as the movie that “… will change the face of Nollywood on the world map…,” is now available for streaming on line for FREE) on Ndani.TV, which is, in short, an online video streaming website that features primarily Nollywood cinema - or what the founders call "the best of New Nollywood as well as the classics."
The Figurine starred Ramsey Nouah, Kunle Afolayan, Omoni Oboli, Funlola Aofiyebi-Raimi, Jide Kosoko, Wale Adebayo and Muraina Oyelami. It won 5 awards at the African Movie Academy Awards in 2010, including the awards for Best Picture, Cinematography and Visual Effects.
As for Afolayan's Phone Swap, which stars Nigerian-British stage/film vet Wale Ojo (Meet The Adebanjos) and the very lovely Nse Ikpe-Etim (Guilty Pleasures) in the lead roles, UK and USA distribution rights for were acquired last summer by London-based OHTV for both UK and USA release, with a UK release planned to happen before a USA release can be expected.
No dates yet however.
His latest, October 1, stars Sadiq Daba, Kehinde Bankole, David Bailie, Kayode Olaiya, Nick Rhys, Fabian Lojede, and Demola Adedoyin.