By Joshua Olomu
Producer and Project Director of ‘Nigeria 1914’, a historic film that chronicles Nigeria’s journey from amalgamation, Mr Akin Laniyi, on Thursday solicited support for the project from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
He made the call when he led the Project Team of the epic film on a courtesy visit to the Acting Managing Director and Editor-In-Chief of NAN, Mr Ibrahim Mmamanga.
Laniyi said: “Our visit is first of all to request that NAN help us tell Nigerians and the world about this project, Nigeria 1914.”
“We appreciate the role of NAN in the media industry, and we believe that with its support, we will be able to touch our national conscience through this project.
“Nigeria 1914 is an officially government endorsed epic movie presently in pre-production for release in the year 2020 to coincide with the year of the country’s 60th anniversary since her independence.
“This great work, with global audience in mind, will be based on Nigeria’s rich and exciting history, before and after her amalgamation in 1914 and up to the golden era of her founding fathers in 1960.
“We felt that at a time like this, Nigeria is in need of such a project because it will provoke our consciousness as a people to reflect on our great history and the much needed social order.”
According to him, ‘Nigeria 1914’ project is inspired by the classic movie “Australia”, produced based on Australian history to promote interracial understanding between White Australian settlers and aboriginal natives for a greater future for Australia’s diversity.
Laniyi explained that the proposed motion picture would be set in locations across Nigeria, featuring veteran Nollywood actors Pete Edochie, Patience Ozokwor, Magaji Mijinyawa, Asabe Madaki, Nkem Owoh and Joke Silva, among others.
He added that the project would feature a documentary that reflects Nigeria’s past and envision its future and a film that would dramatise the nation’s history from 1914, featuring actors from Nigeria and Europe.
“The aim is to produce a highly educational material and an iconic national asset based on our great history that would educate and inspire us and our children on the essence of patriotism, nationalism, and nationhood.”
He further explained that the project has received the endorsements of the Federal Ministry of Information, the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC) and the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
Responding, Mmamanga commended the “Nigeria 1914” team for recognising NAN’s crucial role in promoting such significant project, and reiterated that the agency was willing to support worthwhile projects aimed at promoting Nigeria’s unity.
He therefore assured the thespians that the agency would support the Nigeria 1914 activities as long as it engenders national peace and unity, especially in giving the needed publicity.
“We are very capable to do what you expect from us as a news agency, and be assured that we will cooperate with you.
“You keep us informed on the details of things you do stage by stage and we assure you that we will give you maximum support,” he said.