First Bank of Nigeria Limited has announced its lead sponsorship of the movie titled Ayinla, which is billed to premiere on Sunday, 13 June 2020.
The movie is suspense-driven, narrating the life of Ayinla Yusuf, popularly known as Ayinla Omowura (an Apala musician), his rise to fame, his identity, the depth of his craft and music, and the basis for his relevance after his tragic death forty years ago as a result of a stab from his manager, Bayewu, during a bar fight on the 6th of May, 1980 in Abeokuta.
Directed by multiple award-winning and globally acclaimed Nigerian filmmaker and director, Tunde Kelani, a statement said Ayinla is produced by Jadesola Osiberu.
Tunde Kelani, who is the founder of Mainframe Opomulero Productions, said “the making of Ayinla allows us to throw a glance over our shoulders to our often-neglected intangible heritage. Nigeria is blessed with huge cultural diversity and locked away are thousands of stories we can share with a global audience. FirstBank’s partnership with us at this stage is not a mere coincidence, owing to its over hundred years of historical contribution in unlocking the huge potentials in Nigeria which can offer continental and global audiences”.
With the sponsorship of similar socio-cultural initiatives in the creative arts industry like Moremi, Makaliki, Oba Esugbayi stage drama, October 1st (a movie) and the Calabar Festival, the bank’s sponsorship of Ayinla affirms its support for the development of arts in Nigeria under its First@arts initiative.
First@arts is FirstBank’s platform for consolidating all its efforts in the arts, supporting the entire value chain of the creative arts, providing much-needed financing and advisory support, showcasing and facilitating the successes of the industry, and enabling customers to explore and access the wealth of opportunities the creative industry has to offer.
The bank said achieving these and a host of many others have been implemented through strategic partnerships with organisations like the British Council, Duke of Shomolu Productions, Live Theatre Lagos, Freedom Park, Terra Kulture, and the Cross Rivers State Government (Calabar Festival), amongst many others.
Ayinla appeals to a multifaceted audience that cuts across fans of highlife and afrobeat music, the youth, and the elite Yoruba demography. It features some of Nollywood’s favourite stars including Adedimeji Lateef who played the role of Ayinla Omowura, Kunle Afolayan, Bimbo Ademoye, Mr. Macaroni, Omowunmi Dada, Ade Laoye, Jumoke Otedola, and Bimbo Manuel.
Speaking on the movie, Jadesola Osiberu, who is founder, Greoh Studios said, “Working with the great Tunde Kelani is something I have wanted to do for a long time, and I am so glad that we were able to do it on a project like Ayinla. This collaboration was an interesting experience, and I am glad everyone finally gets to see the film we made in the cinemas nationwide from 18 June 2021. I’d like to thank the management of First Bank of Nigeria Limited for choosing to come on this journey with us.”
Expressing her delight on the movie, Folake Ani-Mumuney, Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, FirstBank said; “For over 127 years, FirstBank has been at the forefront of nation-building; enabling Nigeria and Nigerians through resourceful partnerships to build the Nigerian creative industry value chain, especially the arts and entertainment sub-sectors. We remain proud of this sponsorship that creates an excellent platform to showcase Nigeria to the world as being part of a collective goal to continually keep dreams and hope alive; holding strong to our commitment to reignite cultural heritage.”
“Without a doubt, the movie industry remains part of the creative and entertainment industry value-chain across the globe and indeed a powerful channel to drive our heritage and culture, which resonates with our legacy of being woven into the fabric of society.”
According to research disclosed in PWC’s recent Entertainment & Media Outlook report, Nigeria’s entertainment is expected to rise from $4.46 billion in 2018 to a $10.5 billion market by the end of 2023. In addition, with this initiative and other sponsored event, FirstBank is committed to strengthening its contribution to the development of the entertainment industry in the country.