The submission of films for the second edition of the Lekki International Film Festival opens on Thursday, November 14. This is five months ahead of the actual festival events, a shift from the month of June to April. The inaugural festival held in June at the Lekki Coliseum in Lekki Phase 1, Lagos. The dates for 2020 have been scheduled from Monday, April 20 to Saturday, April 25.
The 2019 edition featured film entries from national and international film makers. Speakers at the festival forum also included such international experts as Jonathan Haynes, a professor of film at Long Island University, New York and Tony Adah theatre and film studies professor at the University of of Minnesota. Others were Duro Oni until recently a deputy vice chancellor at the University of Lagos, Kingsley Uranta of Channels TV, Segun Oyekunle managing director of Abuja Film Village (who also chaired the festival awards jury), Taju Agboola a seasoned field and studio production expert and retired Vice Air Marshall Femi Gbadebo.
Segilola Awolesi, a radio producer who also is the head of corporate relations of the festival, said in Lagos in a release co-signed by the secretary of the jury Augusta Okon: “[The] 2020 Lekki International Film Festival is set to be a lot more exciting with a more programme content pointed towards a greater public engagement.
“We are engaging the interest and attention of the distinct age groups with innovative content. We are looking at the upstart professionals which also includes the college grade participants as well as the upwardly mobile social segments. The very mature older classes will be met with vintage programmes bordering on history and culture.”
Among the main award categories for the festival is the film legend award, an award that is not contested for. The festival in conceiving the award intends to connect production culture to history.
Awolesi and Okon also stated that “Nigeria has a very rich history of television and film. It is regrettable that some of most important historical film and television assets may have been lost or destroyed. Many of our television and film legends are no longer with us. Those still around are significantly overlooked and unacknowledged in view of the special roles they have played in our development. This partly why it is important to introduce this award.”
The festival also intends to expose the upcoming generation and intimate them with our rich and diverse culture by direct involvement. This is why smartphone film photography is being introduced into the menu for film submissions.
A special masterclass on smartphone photography will be held and directed by a Nigerian practitioner in the field who is based in New York.
The other categories of awards are overall best film award, the best feature film, the best short feature, the best documentary and the best indigenous language film. Others are the best actor award, the best director, the best writing, the best song/ music score. The awards are a plaque, a certificate and a digital festival laurel.
The festival seminar, which is one of the key offerings of the events, will feature a diverse cast of speakers from industry leaders in Nigeria and abroad. The festival publishes an annual event magazine with festival highlights and background of speakers and film makers, the film selection, and a whole range of interesting features on Lekki and Lagos. The 2019 magazine visual and textual features on Lekki lifestyles, events having direct and tangential bearing on the film industry. It also featured Lekki people, social engagements and landmarks.