Festivals of every kind celebrate. In the case of the film festival, it is about the celebration of sterling qualities. They are comparable to the traditional yam festival in Africa where the largest harvests are brought to the fore as a triumph of hard work, commitment and sacrifice.
Festivals, including yam festivals, are about the ingathering of the people. About relating with the community and associate communities. They are about shared experiences and the sharing of experiences. Those who share in the triumphs of a festival’s greatest hauls are thereon motivated – to go the distances and break limits. To give their calls nothing less than their utmost best. What’s worth doing, as the saying goes…
From the ingathering both at the level of the immediate, defined community to related communities in other geographies but which are also immediate by means of technological communications, comes the nurturing of opportunities. Of markets and new markets. There is a nurturing of new possibilities and co-operations arising from the spirit of healthy competitions and the sharing and comparing of notes.
The very ground producing the harvest is similarly of great importance. For example, how is the ground to receive the latest manures? How are the practitioners to learn to utilize new tools and implements for tilling the ground and for irrigating the spheres of their tillage?
To be sure, the ground of a film festival is the society. There is the continued need for the creation and recreation of ways and means for the industry in the social clime. New regulations must come into effect. The festival has to contribute to the making of new laws and regulations that would stimulate and enable a more healthy practice.
To cite one example. Why is Lagos and Nigeria for that matter such a hostile place for shooting movies? Even for television production work? Is there a role for social mobilization? For education and for increased community involvement?
I will say, welcome LIFF.
Let’s say a warm welcome to a new day.
(From a keynote speech by film director Dapo Adeniyi)