Thursday, 21 March 2013


The first time I went to Enugu to work was in the year 2000. I'd been directing and writing in Nollywood since 1996 when wrote and assisted Ifeaniyi Anyafulu in directing HINTS Magazine's blockbuster WHEN THE SUN SETS, a movie that launched Kate Henshaw's glittering career and established the careers of several other actors. From 1996 to the year 2000. I waited patiently for somebody to call me to come work in Enugu. I looked on enviously as other directors went down to our new Hollywood then to shoot some of the movies I'd written, movies like FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN, PEACEMAKER, ISSAKABA, LAST BURIAL, THE POPE MUST HEAR THIS and so many others and became instant superstars while i hung back in Lagos waiting for my time. That time finally came when Pete Edochie called me to come down to Enugu to write called me to come down to Enugu to write the Catholic Classic FATHER TANSI. After that trip Enugu discovered me and i went on to shoot a series of movies some which also went on to establish my reputation as not just a writer but a director of note in Nollywood. I fell in love once again with the quaint little town not just because of its scenic beauty and pleasant weather which reminds me of the Azores one of my favorite holiday and vacation spots in the world but primarily because of all the people I met along the way and worked with. People who enriched my life no end. I dare anybody in Nigeria to replicate the carnival atmosphere we created in Macdavous and Naiko Hotels in Agbani Enugu, where you could find ten productions on set at the same time and all the artistes and crews lodged in the same hotels. I dare anybody to replicate the camarederie that grew between rival directors and actors as we all drank from the same bottles and ate from the same plates, shared our victories and cried at our tragedies. Can any one of us forget the day that rising actress Cynthia was run over and killed by Theodore Anyanji's car within the hotel premises.

I look back at the long evenings spent with Uncle Sam Loco in front of his chalet as he drank copious amounts of Gulder and told me stories of his growing years in Abakiliki. Can ever forget me trying to play my guitar and Uncle Justus Esiri fresh from intimidating and unfortunate neophyte director trying to recall his music playing days in Germany. It was in this sleepy town that i met Uncle Pete Eneh for the first time. It was in this town that I lost Nnamdi Eze. Here I met a girl that became my muse Vanessa Nzediegwu. Here I discovered the undying love and Kindness of a good man like Cajetan Obi. I can't call all the names and give a list of all the beautiful and sad things that happened to me in Enugu.
This morning, i woke up and found out that Uncle Sam is gone, same with Uncle Justus, same with Pete Eneh, same with Pat Edeh, same with Nnamdi Eze, Kenneth Egbuna, and myraid other artistes who invested the world with their exceptional talents. I look around me and i ask myself who is left.
What we have left is the rivalry, jealousy and bitterness.What we have left is the back biting, the hedonism and the practice of juju to get roles. What we have left is the politics of divide and rule, the actors who do not know how to carry wine glasses, ride a horse or even speak English language. What we have left are directors who do not know the difference between a long shot and a close up, camera men who do not know that cameras have settings, producers who are only interested in the volume of movies they produce in a year instead of the quality. What we have is an industry that is torn with strife and competition. A new Nollywood in Asaba where massive rubbish is being produced and unleashed to insult the sensibilities of a populace we used to feed with excellent movies. What we have left is a group of artistes who think that the more scandals they accumulate for themselves the bigger their stardom.
I am not able to go on for their is too much to say but i tell you my colleague, lets wake up and build back this beautiful thing we gave birth to before it becomes a monster and destroys us all.


  1. Great talk and very touching one at that. I do not wish to recap all you have said, but when I remember also my encouter with them, two days will not be enough to write.
    What we have left is blackmail, jealousy, backbiting and above all running your colleague down to gain relivance. What we have left is how to sideline others to get money from Government, all for personaal selfish interest,what we have left is that no one has the interest of the industry at heart. God bless us...

  2. Touching! If this doesn't prick your conscience, a Samurai sword won't! I still believe in a NEW NOLLYWOOD. God is at work, let's keep our smiles... I'm hopeful. God bless you boss...God bless you. Kel' K

  3. True words you have spoken here. I actually hear the cry of a lonely warefarer. we all hope that things will eventually work out well for your industry. those days you talk about might never come back again and those who have left might never return but there will be new relationships, new times and new moments. I feel your pain bro.