Lagos, Nigeria. Laughter, Hugs and Handshakes went round and around as 15 scholarship recipients from The 2014 AFRIFF’s Talent Development Workshops said goodbye to friends and colleagues during a media parley and send-forth event held at AFRIFF’s office in Victoria Island, Lagos. The Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF), in collaboration with The Ford Foundation provided scholarships to them for being the best in their chosen fields of training. They are slated to attend Film School at The Montana State University in the United States of America. This list of recipients includes 12 Nigerians, two Kenyans and 1 Ethiopian.
“This Scholarship scheme is a one month intensive hands-on training camp on various aspects of filmmaking with an emphasis on documentary film making.” Said Prof. Paul Nwulu, Ford Foundation’s Program Officer, Advancing Public Service Media (West Africa). “There will be six days each week of intensive classes which will include intensive field work and hands-on training,” he explained. “A trip to Hollywood in Los Angeles will crown this trip with interactions billed to happen with American film makers and a tour of certain film studios slated to take place as well.”
Founder/CEO of AFRIFF, Ms Chioma Ude, revealed that the skill acquisition and youth development initiative was conceived using filmmaking as a veritable vehicle to youth empowerment. Tagged AFRIFF Talent Development Workshops, the initiative provides beginners and intermediate courses for young people. She said. “We believe we can use this model for a social revolution that will change the economic horizon of the African film industry, by providing technical knowledge and skill sets to the abundant talents in our film community.” Chioma Ude noted that this training in the US is in line with the vision of providing growth opportunities for graduates of the festival’s training program. AFRIFF has since its first edition in 2010, provided free training and talent development opportunities for young people and aspiring filmmakers. They have provided cutting edge education in Sound for Film, Cinematography and Screen Writing for over 500 students, in partnership with Sound & Motion Technical College and City Varsity, Cape Town, South Africa. They have also worked directly with students of the National Film Institute, Jos; PEFTI Film Institute, Lagos; the Creative Arts Department at The University of Port-Harcourt; Department of Media & Theatre Arts at The University of Calabar and The Theatre Arts Department of The University of Uyo. The Desicon Group was the 2014 sponsor of the AFRIFF Talent Development Workshops.
AFRIFF also organizes master classes for more established filmmakers and professionals in the industry.