Saturday, March 8, 2014

DATELINE LAGOS: 'MultiChoice has always believed in Africa's strength to tell our own stories on television and in film,' says pay-TV platform.

John Ugbe, the managing director for MultiChoice Nigeria tells TV with Thinus that M-Net and MultiChoice's AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards is a way to recognise and promote Africa's film and TV industry in such a way that better content is produced.

The AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards provides an opportunity to existing and aspiring filmmakers and producers to attend workshops as people working in the industry across the continent compete to be the best in Africa.

The AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards is currently in its 2nd year and is taking place on Saturday evening in Lagos, Nigeria.

The award ceremony will again be broadcast live on multiple AfricaMagic TV channels on MultiChoice's DStv platform across the African continent.

"We're seeing better TV and movies being made across Africa every year. The AMVCAs inspires producers and actors  to begin to produce even better quality TV and film because everybody is looking forward to win. I think what we saw this year was a lot more entries that last year. There was also validation that this is the biggest award you can win in the film industry in Africa.

"Movie making is all about creativity. It is about telling a story that resonates with people. It's not about how big the story is, it is about how strong the story is. It is important that people are inspired."

John Ugbe says MultiChoice and M-Net are committed to building the TV and film industry across Africa in every country and that the AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards is an "investment".

"To build the film and TV industry in Africa you have to invest in it. We don't expect to see a return on this investment immediately, but it is very important that we recognise the hardworking people, invest in education to upskill and bring more people into this vibrant sector," John Ugbe tells TV with Thinus.

"Even with the huge challenges around infrastructure, the African TV and film industry can still produce strong stories".

"If you look at the industry in Nigeria, in the Niger Africa, we're rivaling any continent right now. There's many more movies produced than in Hollywood and the quality is growing. That goes to show that an investment in the industry, and in recognition such as the AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards is not wasted."

"MultiChoice has always believed in Africa's strength to tell our own stories on television and in film - and we still do so very strongly," says John Ugbe.

"Nollywood [the film industry in Nigeria] played a pioneering role in developing the African film industry. And now it is no longer just a Nollywood thing - it is all around us in various African countries now".

"And AfricaMagic is helping with this - helping to lay the foundation stage on which African countries can build and further grow their film industries," says John Ugbe.