By NGOZI EMEDOLIBE
The Nigerian Film Corporation has announced the date for the 12th edition of ZUMA Film Festival (ZUFF), which it says will hold from December 1 to 7, 2021 in Abuja, the nation’s capital. Submission of entries, NFC also says will be opened to interested filmmakers from Nigeria and around the world starting April 2, 2021 and will end on October 30, 2021.
The theme for this year’s edition of ZUFF, Nigeria’s foremost film festival, is: “SHOW THE MONEY”, and will focus on highlighting the great investment opportunities available in digital content creation and exhibition. The Film Festival, which has since 2017, been held annually, will continue to play its critical role in galvanising the film sector of the Nigerian economy, by presenting leveraging opportunities within the unique Nigerian film industry for the growth of the country.
Dr. Chidia Maduekwe, NFC’s Managing Director and Chairman, Organising Committee of ZUFF, among others explains that the theme for the 2021 edition was chosen to further the conversations on the yearnings of Nigerian filmmakers to be offered the opportunity of secured returns on investment. ZUFF 2021 will therefore focus on envisaged positive outcomes for film stakeholders in the country to work and as well key into vast opportunities that are available within online digital platforms for the development, marketing and distribution of content, at minimal cost, but with huge return on investment as its key objective. The Nigerian Film industry has the capacity to exponentially galvanise the creative economy of Nigeria, through the massive creation of jobs for a greater percentage of the nation’s youthful population who are digital savvy and full of creativity, Dr. Maduekwe further said. He maintained that the growth and great potentials within the film sector of Nigeria makes it imperative for the sustenance of efforts that will enable content producers as well as off-takers develop and benefit from film marketing, distribution and exhibition models. In addition to the above, ZUFF 2021, the 12th in the series will once more provide the platform to sustain the recognition of Nigerian filmmakers who have or are adding the needed value to the development of the art and business of filmmaking. Brian Etuk, NFC’s Head of Public Affairs in a statement issued in Jos, Plateau State said that ZUMA Film Festival 2021 will just like immediate past editions, provide opportunity for both physical and virtual participation, not only because of adherence to COVID -19 Safety Protocols, but as a means of increasing the participatory level by offshore film professionals, including funders, producers, marketers, film distribution companies who have, and rightly so, identified Nigeria as the fastest growing market for digital content creation and distribution for Africa, and are willing to invest.
Participation details including entry submission which opens on April 2nd 2021 and closes on October 30th, 2021 are as stated below. All entries, addressed to the Festival Director, ZUMA FILM FESTIVAL can be submitted through the free film way platform www.filmfreeway.com/zumafilmfestival; or to ZUMA FILM FESTIVAL Secretariat, Nigerian Film Corporation Headquarters, Jos Plateau State, as well as NFC Zonal Offices in Lagos, Asaba, Umuahia, Yola, Kano and Abuja. Entry forms can also be downloaded from the festival and NFC websites; www.zumafilmfest.gov.ng; www.nigerianfilms.gov.ng.
ZUMA FILM FESTIVAL 2021 AWARD categories are: Best Cinematography, Best Script, Best Animation, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Documentary, Best Foreign Film, Best Student Film, Best Picture, Best Indigenous Film.