Chichi Nworah, CEO of Lekki-based Giant Creative Media, talks to Content Nigeria about her latest project, Shanty Town, and what the future holds for African stories.
Can you tell us what your latest project, Shanty Town, is all about and what prompted you to produce it?
Shanty Town is a crime thriller, but it’s also a story told to call attention to the menace of society’s dark underbelly. Poverty, mental slavery and corruption run deep in society and the film is a tool we can use to talk about the damages these are causing. We need society to know crime does not pay.
The cast includes prominent Nollywood stars. How easy was it to gather a number of film heavyweights as cast and crew?
Xavier Ighorodje wrote the script with Donald Tombia, from a story by Ayo Paseda and Shirleyann Ede alongside Ighorodje, while award-winning cinematographer John Demps is the director of photography. The film also features Nollywood icons like Richard Mofe Damijo, Chidi Mokeme, Ini Edo. Uche Jumbo, Nse Ikpe Etim, Mercy Eke and Shaffy Bello. These stars love good stories. When they read your script and see the story you want to tell, they will lend their voices.
How soon will the movie debut? And how can viewers watch it?
We are presently in post-production and we are taking our time. We don’t know the other details yet because our distributors will make decisions on that. I am not at liberty to reveal who our distributors are, as we are keeping it under wraps for now.
Can you give us a hint of what to expect with Omoge Suzzy, the other project you have in the works?
Omoge Suzzy is a new project that we are working on presently. It is an action comedy film. It has all the glitz and glamour of an action movie with plenty of laughs to keep your spirits high, and we have talented Nollywood stars in this as well.
As a global entertainment executive, what has been your experience of creating and producing original and authentic African stories, and how widely do you think the African ‘voice’ has been heard?
It’s a process but I can tell you our voices are louder at the moment. It’s authenticity that will make African stories stand out. We need to cultivate a habit of developing our stories. Once you crack the script, everything else follows. It’s harder now, because of Covid-19, which has increased our production costs.
Moving on and in the near future, what do you anticipate?
I see a future where African stories will be consumed globally. We are currently working on a project with an international partner that we will be unveiling soon. We want to build a new wave of authentic African storytellers, and this multifaceted partnership will offer professional training, project development, funding, production and distribution for female creatives [filmmakers and writers] in Africa.