The Abuja International Film Festival (AIFF) has honoured the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), Actors Guild of Nigeria(AGN) and other stakeholders with Special Recognitions Awards.
Its Founder, Fidelis Duker, said this in Abuja at the closing ceremony of AIFF with the theme “Beyond Borders: Globalisation and the Film Business”
Duker said that the stakeholders were recognised for their support and contributions to the annual festival, making it a flagship event in the nation’s film industry.
According to him, the stakeholders are the Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Directors Guild of Nigeria (DGN) and foremost filmmakers in the Nigerian film industry, among others.
Others include the US High Commission, British Council, Chinese Embassy, as well as relevant government institutions and government functionaries.
The founder said that the two decades of consistently holding the AIFF was a milestone that should be celebrated alongside those who have contributed to its success story.
“I take this opportunity as the founder of the Abuja International Film Festival to reflect on the incredible journey of our festival over the past 20 years.
“We also need to appreciate everyone who has been there for us in this amazing journey of building a foremost film festival in Abuja.
“It is truly remarkable to see how this event has grown from humble beginning when there were no cinemas in Abuja and Nigeria, to becoming a major contributor to the exhibition ecosystem in the country.”
Duker recalled that in the early days of the festival, film screening was a challenge due to the lack of dedicated cinema spaces, but it overcame the obstacle by leveraging on outdoor screenings and makeshift theatres in hotels.
“Through our constant dedication to promoting film culture, we were instrumental in fostering the development of cinemas and creating a demand for quality film experiences.
“This led to the establishment of numerous cinemas that now serve as vibrant hubs for film enthusiasts in the city,” he said.
According to him, this year’s edition of the festival explores the intersection between the rapidly evolving global film industry and the diverse cultures that shape it.
“We believe that cinema has the power to transcend boundaries and bring people together, providing a platform for cross-cultural understanding and exchange.”
In his goodwill message, National President of the AGN, Emeka Rollas (MON), expressed delight for the honour and described the AIFF as a mentoring platform for budding talents in Nigeria.
“On behalf of the AGN, I want to thank and celebrate the Abuja International Film Festival for being a part of the mentoring process for actors and would be actors.”
Dr Salihu Ladan, former Director-General of the Federal Radio Corporation (FRCN), who also received the Special Recognitions Awards, extolled the founder of the AIFF for staying committed to its goals over these years.
“You have placed Nigeria film industry on the global map,” Ladan said.