A Hotel Called Memory comes on big screen in Lagos tomorrow
After winning the audience award for best experimental film at the Black Star Film Festival in Philadelphia, A Hotel Called Memory is set to premiere in Lagos, tomorrow.
Written by Branwen Okpako and produced by Ego Boyo, the movie, which is directed by Akin Omotoso, a Nigerian actor, writer and director, is a fresh take on African cinema, steadily blazing the trail to redefining film making in the industry.
The film features Nigerian and South African favorities Nse Ikpe-Etim, Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju, Mmabatho Montsho, Nomzamo Mbatha and Abdi Hussein.
Speaking during a media preview and parley in Lekki, Lagos, Omotoso, best known for his films: Man on Ground, Tell Me Sweet Something and his multi-award wining film Vaya, said, the essence of the movie is to do something different from what is known to be the norm in the industry.
He said, “We sought to do something that had not been done before and we hope people can see and appreciate that when they see this film. Apart from redefining the film industry in Nigeria, the film seeks to challenge acting styles and pushed its stars to new depths,” he said.
“If you understand the rules of making a film, you can break it by doing something different from everybody is doing. There was no talking in the film and all through the duration that we shot it there was no talking on set. It is a silent film where the cast didn’t utter a word,” he added.
While encouraging young and upcoming filmmakers, the Jacob’s Cross star, explained that film making is bad, a marathon and people will tell you certain things are not possible.
“We shot the film without light and sound. We had instances where we had to 10 several times because we the film to be as natural as the audience can imagine. It was during editing that we infuse some music into because there are scenes that required dancing. Technology helped immensely in shooting the movie,” Omotoso stated.
The producer, Ego Boyo, an actor and film producer of Violated, Keeping Faith, To Live Again, 30 Days and best known for her role in rested series Checkmate is excited to share this experimental project with everyone.
She said, “Working on non-conventional and challenging projects always produces amazing results. The combination of the director, the actors and the production of this film has created cinema magic and we cannot wait for everyone to experience this.”
Set and shot on location in three African cities — Cape Town, Lagos and Zanzibar, A Hotel Called Memory follows Lola — played by Nse Ikpe-Etim — who is recently separated from her husband in Lagos and decides to go on a journey of self rediscovery in Zanzibar and Cape Town, hoping to forget the past and move on with her life.
For Nse Ikpe-Etim, “This truly was unlike anything I have worked on before, and brought out skills I didn’t know I had. It was an educative and rewarding experience.”
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