5 Nigerian Films That Have Sparked Oscar Considerations

5 Nigerian Films That Have Sparked Oscar Considerations

5 Nigerian Films; The 96th edition of the Academy Awards, commonly known as the Oscars, is set to take place on March 11, 2024. These esteemed awards celebrate excellence in both artistic and technical aspects of filmmaking and are presented annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, located in Beverly Hills, California, United States. Members of the Academy vote to recognize outstanding achievements in cinema.

Nollywood’s growth, marked by better storytelling and global visibility, makes an Oscar nod or win a notable but elusive goal.

1. Lionheart (2018)

In 2018, “Lionheart,” a Nigerian drama produced by Chinny Onwugbenu and directed by Genevieve Nnaji, became Nigeria’s first Netflix original. Featuring Pete Edochie, Genevieve Nnaji, and Nkem Owoh, the film gained global recognition when Netflix acquired it on September 7, 2018.

“Lionheart” was Nigeria’s debut submission for the Best International Feature Film category at the 92nd Academy Awards.

However, to be eligible for submission in the Best International Feature Film category, films must meet specific criteria. These include having an initial release in the submitting country followed by at least seven consecutive days of theatrical screening, predominantly featuring non-English dialogue, and not being electronically transmitted before its official theatrical release.

Despite being Nigeria’s official submission, “Lionheart” was disqualified by the Academy on November 4, 2019.

2. The Milkmaid 

“The Milkmaid” is a Nigerian drama film released in 2020, directed by Desmond Ovbiagele. Chosen as Nigeria’s entry for Best International Feature Film at the 93rd Oscars, “Lionheart” didn’t secure a nomination.The film stars Anthonieta Kalunta, Gambo Usman Kona, and Maryam Booth in prominent roles.

See also  Singer Tems reveals she faced bullying in her childhood due to her voice

“The Milkmaid,” set in a Hausa-speaking region, explores insurgency’s impact on women and children in Sub-Saharan Africa in a suspenseful thriller.The narrative delves into the complexities of reclaiming a disrupted past.

“The Milkmaid,” initially among 93 eligible films, didn’t make the final shortlist of 15 nominees for the Best International Feature Film. Despite “Lionheart’s” disqualification in 2019, the Academy’s acknowledgment was a significant achievement for Nigeria at the Oscars.

3, 4 &5. Anikulapo/Elesin Oba/ Agesinkole

The 2023 Oscars submission from Nigeria sparked controversy with three non-English titled films submitted for consideration but none selected. These films were Kunle Afolayan’s “Anikulapo,” Biyi Bandele’s “Elesin Oba,” and Tope Adebayo and Adebayo Tijani’s “King of Thieves: Agesinkole.”

Instead, three films, ‘King of Thieves,’ ‘Anikulapo,’ and ‘Eleshin Oba,’ were chosen to advance to the finals.

On September 3, 2022, the committee declared a “no film eligibility” decision. Chineze Anyaene-Abonyi, head of the NOSC, stated that the committee struggled to find a submission that met the criteria.

The decision sparked controversies in the filmmaking industry and among committee members, prompting debates over revoting and reversing choices.

Despite extending the submission deadline, the Oscars organizers granted the NOSC the chance to reconvene and revote, but they declined.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *