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Nollywood Week 2023 ends in Grand style As Winners were unveiled in Closing ceremony, Paris

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Biodun Stephens and Deyemi Okanlawon won and VSL Media CEO receive their Award

In a highly anticipated outcome, director Biodun Stephens’s film “The Wildflower” secured the coveted “Prix du Public” (the Audience Award which is based on votes by the festival audience) in partnership with Angénieux Lenses, much to the delight of the festival audience.

The Wildflower gives a voice to Nigerian victims of GBV (Gender-Based Violence) by following sexual assault incidents inflicted upon three different but connected women.

New to the festival this year, the NollywoodWeek Film Festival introduced two new awards: “the Short Film Jury Award” and “the Feature Film Jury Award”. Each jury was made up of professionals in the industry (actors, film critics, distributors, directors, and government film officials).

In the short films category, three films stood out at this year’s edition of the festival with two winners and one special mention.

The Jury gave a special mention to the documentary “Genius in Disguise” by director James Amuta. This film tries to demystify dyslexia by talking with people living with it, educators, and mental health specialists. To enhance the documentary’s visual appeal, the director illustrated the film’s dramatic elements with animated storyboards.

Lucky Nwani Orire from Love Language receives the best short film award

Dyslexia is a learning disability that affects 40 million Nigerians however 98% go undiagnosed. The documentary was screened during the NollywoodWeek Film Festival in the Short But Meaningful category.

For the winners, there were two that the jury selected for the Best Short Film Jury Award: “Love Language” directed by Uzoamaka Aniunoh and “Employee of the Month” directed by Goga Clay. Love Language is a short film featuring an inter-ethnic couple who discovers how their cultural differences challenge their bond.

The story, set in Lagos, follows the lives of Chioma, played by director Uzoamaka Aniunoh, and Abdul (Adam Garba) whose relationship gets put to the test. Employee of the Month takes a look at the impact the “EndSARS” protests against police brutality have on a young Nigerian family.

The winner of the Feature Film Jury Award went to “Ba Ni” by director Daniel Ehimen. A young girl is drawn into the underworld of beggars and must do anything to escape the grip of her abusive boss.  

The jury gave a special for the feature film “Brotherhood” directed by Loukman Ali

NollywoodWeek is a film festival organized by Okada Media, an organization run by Serge Noukoué and Nadira Shakur. The two co-founders have been promoting African cinema on a global scale for a decade and launched the first edition of Nollywood Week in Paris in 2013.

The Nollywood Week film festival takes place every year in the spring and aims to make accessible the best of Nigerian films to French audiences. It is also a forum for discussion and networking around the main challenges and opportunities of the African film landscape, with master classes, Q&As and opportunities to meet production and distribution experts.

Love language Creative Producer Lucky Nwani Orire and Short Films Jury President

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