The Accidental Spy… political thriller with a difference

Producer of The Accidental Spy, Darlington Abuda; comedian and moviemaker, AY and actor, Ramsey Nouah, on set of the film

With his recent movie, The Accidental Spy, still making the rounds in the cinemas, Nollywood filmmaker, Darlington Abuda, a theatre arts graduate of Delta State University, Abraka, was elated at the reception the movie received in its first week in cinemas across the country.

Shot on locations in London, Amsterdam and Lagos, the movie is an action comedy that explores the story of an IT specialist, Emmanuel Prince, who travels to London for healing from heartbreak caused by his cheating girlfriend.

In the meantime, Nigerian news is abuzz about a new experimental energy source invented by a Nigerian national studying abroad called ‘The Green Light Source,’ which promises to provide natural electricity to Nigeria.

This prospect, however, does not sit well with Nigerian power cartels, which are currently manipulating and abusing the energy system for their own personal gains. Unwilling to have their ‘business’ hampered by a meddling outsider, ‘The Chairman,’ as he is called, hires a professional hitman to kill the inventor before the unveiling…

“Let me let out an open secret,” Abuda said during a chat. “I love writing and I love movies. In my work, to promote and produce films for others, I noticed that there is a gap in the industry that needed to be filled with a genre of film. I tried to communicate the story with some writers but they were not catching my vision. So, I decided to write the screenplay myself. After I was done with it, FilmOne Nigeria believed in my vision and worked with me to produce the movie.”

Although, the movie has a political slant, Abuda is not bothered that it could stir the hornets’ nest. According to him, “I am a Nigerian and every Nigerian makes fun of the word ‘cabal.’ It is my desire to have basic amenities available to all Nigerians and I tried to use humour to analyse a part of that.”

On why some parts of the movie were shot in foreign land, Abuda said, “These locations were chosen by design based on the concept of the story. I am all for cultural dissemination. As we shot in the various locations, we were able to share our cultures with the cast and crew from various nationalities. We shared food and folklore and gave the people a whole new glimpse of the country. Sharing our cultures and learning from each other is the primary positive benefit of international collaborations in the entertainment industry.”

Abuda also spoke about the production process of The Accidental Spy, “The movie is directed by a London-based director, Roger Russell and written by me, with additional writing and editing by Diane Diaz. I also worked with a talented producer in London called Nicola Gregory. It was a seamless process. The crew in the various locations were all excited working with us and we had an enjoyable time on set sharing ideas and cultures.”

With The Accidental Spy, as his second movie, Abuda says, “I am in love with making and watching movies and so I will say, yes, this is something I will definitely do again and again. I entered into the industry to make an impact and put our work on the map for all to see and appreciate. I may not be where I want to be as a producer, but I aim to continue to produce good movies. In spite of the small budget we work with, our movies will stand neck to neck with A-list movies across the world.”

Other than the cinema rounds, Abuda’s plan is to take the movie, loaded with the industry’s best such as AY, Alibaba, Ramsey Nouah Jr, and more to different continents so they have a feel of what is currently being done in Nigeria, adding, “As a movie industry, we have taken the lead and we need to continue to show our innovations to all and sundry.”

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