Last week Tuesday, was a moment of tears, clap, back slapping and photography as select group of people made up of mainly movie industry stakeholders, film critics and the media gathered for the screening of the 10 Million Dollar movie ‘HALF OF A YELLOW SUN.’
There was about ten minutes of heart-touching moment of tears, as Yewande Sadiku, the executive producer who raised over 10 million Dollars for the movie recollected how painfully excruciating it was for her to raise that kind of money especially more so when she has raised over a billion Dollar for other non-movie business ventures. ‘I never believed it could take me about 6 years to raise that kind of money, I am an investment banker by profession, part of my specialty is raising money for people, I have headed a team that raised 1 billion dollars for a corporate organization, I could not believe that raising money for a project that I want to do personally would take this long. Somehow people do not believe it could be done and a lot of people do not believe in the movie industry, there were many times I broke down with tears in my car especially when someone had promised to make a commitment and all of a sudden you can’t reach the person anymore or the person stops picking your calls or replying SMS’.
Continuing, Yewande said ‘Somehow my husband and I sold everything we had and we got one or two people to also put down part of the money and borrowed the remaining money from banks’.
The tears got a few people on Yewande’s side but what finally sealed the conviction was the movie after it was screened. It is a movie that would make any Nigerian in any part of the world proud. Yewande was greatly applauded by the select few, among whom were, Kunle Afolayan, movie critics like Toni Kan, Steve Ayorinde, Samuel Olatunji, Niran Adedokun and respected script writer Tunde Babalola (writer of ‘The Meeting’, ‘The Assignment’ and ‘Last Flight to Abuja’).
For Toni Kan, ‘HALF OF A YELLOW SUN’ should be a must watch for every Nigerian. “You must go and watch it (‘HALF OF A YELLOW SUN’) because it is a valuable piece of Nigeria’s cinema history. It will teach you and touch you in many ways and with2015 approaching and rabble-rousers banging on the drums of war, this love story set in the time of war will give you perspective. War is evil but love conquers all. When I read the novel, I was upset that it had been marketed, mostly, as a book about the Biafran war, it was not. It was a love story set in a time of war. At the core of ‘HALF OF A YELLOW SUN’ is love, lust, loss and the healing power of forgiveness.”
The movie which would be screened in Nigeria, Australia, US, UK, Middle East and Portugal stars Oscar nominee, Chiwetel Ejiofor, British actress, Thandie Newton, Anika Noni Rose, Nollywood acts, Genevieve Nnaji, Zack Orji, Wale Ojo, OC Ukeje, and veteran singer Onyeka Onwenu. The movie is directed by Nigerian playwright, Biyi Bandele.
The premiere in Nigeria is on April 12, 2014 while it will be released across cinemas in Nigeria from April 25, 2014.
Just Incase you didn’t know, Arinze Ejiofor, a doctor and a Nigerian highlife musician is Chiwetel’s father. In 1988 he passed on after a motor accident that involved him and Chiwetel who was only 11years old and has scars on his forehead to show for it. One of the titles of late Arinze’s album is Nna Anyi Bi Na Enu Igwe