During a press briefing, the Greece Ambassador to Nigeria, Ioannis Plotas, affirmed his country’s commitment to support Nigeria’s film and entertainment industry. He made the pledge at the press briefing on Monday where he announced the hosting of the second annual Nollywood Travel Film Festival (NTFF) scheduled to be held in Athens, Greece in May. Plotas said that the event will enhance and improve the existing collaboration between Greece and Nigeria, adding that the film industry plays a key role in unifying countries.
The Greek ambassador stressed the importance of the festival, saying that it would strengthen the cultural ties between Greece and Nigeria. He also pledged to aid Nigeria in improving its agricultural economy and other areas of mutual gain. Opunimi Akinkugbe, the Nigerian ambassador to Greece, expressed her delight at the strengthened ties between the Greek and Nigerian film industries in light of the last year milestone achievement and the impending 2023 Nollywood Travel Film Festival.
Main goal is to develop a film market that brings stakeholders together.
Mykel Parish, founder of the NTFF, remarked at the event stating that the main goal of the film festival in Greece is to promote the partnership between the host nation and Nigeria’s screen industry in the field of film and high-end TV Co-production. Also, to develop a film market that brings together content producers, stakeholders, and investors from both countries to examine opportunities for cooperation and investment throughout the whole value chain of the film industry and to launch Greece-Nigeria Annual Film Week as a practical platform for establishing an MoU on Audio-Visual Co-Production between the two.
Moreover, the film festival is intended to honor the artistic and cultural achievements of the people of Greece, Nigeria, and other potential participating nations. Other goals include creating work possibilities for both nations’ youth via cultural interchange, attracting inbound investment from both countries, and recognizing and rewarding talent in both nations’ film industries. The festival will exhibit Nollywood films that would not normally be shown in Diaspora, as well as creating new chances for the business.
Entertainment industry would increase Nigeria prominence internationally.
President of the Directors Guild of Nigeria, Dr. Victor Okhai, said that the initiative has showed the great bond between Greece and Nigeria, acknowledging that now is the best moment ever. He stated that Africa and Greece have cultural similarities and assured that his members will participate in the event to move the industry to the next level. In his goodwill address, Mr. Arnold Jackson of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council said that culture is no longer an elusive notion but rather something substantial that can be used to deepen existing ties between the two nations.
Dr. Okhai pledged the Council’s participation and support for the event, saying they aim to use it to strengthen connections between Nigeria and Greece in areas of mutual strength. Given the country’s competitive edge, he said, the Nollywood film industry is one of the six economic sectors that are poised for further growth. Nigeria may also benefit greatly from the entertainment industry, which would increase the country’s prominence internationally. The key now, he said, is to secure the perfect film content and distribution.
Nigerian Embassy in Greece is in support of the NTFF 2023 edition.
The Greece-Nigeria Film Awards Night is sure to be a hallmark of the festival, honouring the year’s top actor, actress, short film, online content producer, and cinematographer. Thus far, NTFF has been hosted in Atlanta, Hamburg, London, Berlin, New York, Glasgow, Helsinki, Oslo, Toronto, and Dublin. The Greek Embassy in Nigeria and the Nigerian Embassy in Greece are in support the 2023 Athens edition of the NTFF, along with the Hellenic Film Commission, the Greek Film Commission, Harlem Entertainment, Lagom pasta, Blankpage Advertising, Showtime Productions, the Directors Guild of Nigeria, the Association of Movie Producers, and Afrigold TV.