11th Nollywood Week Film Festival celebrates African cinema in Paris

The 11th edition of the Nollywood Week Film Festival commenced in Paris on Thursday, showcasing the vibrant diversity of African cinema to an eager audience, per africanews.com

While the festival primarily celebrates Nigerian cinema, it also features films from Tanzania, Kenya, Morocco and the United States, offering a rich tapestry of storytelling to African film enthusiasts.

Aissata Seck, the director of the Fondation pour la Mémoire de l’esclavage (Foundation for the Memory of Slavery), expressed her enthusiasm for the festival, highlighting its importance in showcasing diverse African stories. “I love it because we get all kinds of stories. And sometimes you have the feeling of finding yourself through your own personal stories,” she remarked.

Olivier Kissita, an actor and director, emphasised the necessity of such festivals in promoting African cultures. “There’s strength in numbers. To be taken seriously, you need to be numerous, so I think the idea is to walk as a community, in numbers, to have a better chance of showing the richness and different cultures of the continent and even beyond,” he stated.

Still from ‘Atiko’ by Biodun Stephen

Serge Noukoue, co-founder of the festival, highlighted the role of culture in bridging differences and breaking down barriers. “In the realities portrayed in the films, whether at Nollywood Week or elsewhere, there are sometimes more similarities than differences,” he noted.

The festival opened with “Atiko” by Nigerian director Biodun Stephen, a poignant tale of resilience and determination that resonates universally. Additionally, this year’s Nollywood Week features a special focus on animated films and integrated virtual reality, showcasing the innovative strides of African cinema.

With its wide array of films and special focus on emerging trends in the industry, Nollywood Week promises to be an enriching experience for attendees, celebrating the cultural richness and storytelling prowess of African cinema. 

The festival will run until Sunday, May 5.

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