The visit of President Emmanuel Macron of France to the Afrika Shrine on Tuesday was loaded with memories of cultural interactions with the different segments of the Nigeria creative industry.
Macron sure had fun on stage as he took spot on the stage playing a part in a skit that expresses the true character of the Nigerian motion picture industry by injecting comics in educative and informative subject matters.
The drama was designed by Kunle Afolayan’s Golden Effects Production. It stared Nolllywood bests like Joke Silva, Jide Kosoko, Chika Okpala (Zebrudaya), Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Ramsey Nouah, Caroline King, Dakore Akande, Rita Dominic, Yomi Fash-Lanso, Kemi Lala-Akindoju, French actor, Florent Cedric.
The director of the award-winning French/ Mauritanian film, ‘Timbuktu’, Mr. Abderrahmane Sissako was equally invited by Macron to the stage.
The skit titled, “Love from Lagos to France” written by Tunde Babalola, exposes the beautiful world of diplomats from Nigeria and France and their affinity to the tourist attractions in both countries.
A typical scene in the skit is as follows:
“…Do you remember when we used to take the boat cruises along the Seine River?
Yes… and stroll along The Avenue des Champs-Élysées?
And take in the sights at the Notre Dame Cathedral?
And visit the Eiffel Tower? Honey,
I can’t wait!”
But the comic moment was when the Nigerian diplomat, in his attempt to ask where he could take his wife for dinner in French, rendered a statement implying where he could ‘kill’ his wife for dinner.
Afolayan may have been chosen to lead this narrative based on his track records with films like ‘The Figurine’, ‘Phone Swap’, October 1′, and his most celebrated pan African film, ‘The CEO’.
Speaking at the event, the brilliant Nollywood filmmaker Kunle Afolayan had this to say;
“A lot of times, we travel to France and other European countries looking for partnerships and co-productions, and for some reasons the president of France has decided to bring partnership and co-production to us in Nigeria. I think this is phenomenal. I think it’s going to bring about new trend and development in the future of film and entertainment in this country.”
Afolayan who is a member of the Board of Lagos State Council for Arts and Culture is optimistic that Lagos State governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode will make good his promises to boost tourism, arts and entertainment in the state.
“The truth is that I cannot speak for Nigeria as a country,” he declared. “But I can speak for Lagos. I think the governor of Lagos, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode and the President of France seem to share some familiarities. Ambode is a lover of arts and entertainment who also believes in the youths. This is also the same for president Macron. So, I think the new synergy between both of them will strike a new beginning for Lagos and Nigeria.”
What are your thoughts on Macron’s visit? Do you think it will open a new scene of opportunity for both countries in the entertainment industry?
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