Speculations are rife that the once harmonious relationship between the Nigerian movie industry, Nollywood and its counterpart, Ghana’s Ghollywood, is currently under threat as the movie marketers under the aegis of Film, Video Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria (FVPMAN) have placed an embargo on Ghanaian films with effect from the end of this month.
The association has also resolved to halt the distribution of films produced by non-professionals. It insists that if such film(s) must be distributed at all, its right of ownership should be transferred to its members on negotiation.
The FVPMAN chairman, Onitsha branch, Mr. Uzo Godson Nwosu, who confirmed this development to HVP, said this position was taken after the association’s general meeting last weekend in Onitsha.
According to him, the decision became necessary following the position taken by their Ghanaian counterparts who have banned the distribution of Nigerian films in their country long time ago.
His words, “starting from the first week of August, no Ghanaian film will be allowed to enter the Nigerian market again. We have resolved that no Ghanaian film will be distributed within our controlled market. Our Ghanaian counterparts have long stopped distributing our films in their country, and given this development, we have no choice than to reciprocate the gesture.” FVPMAN boss stated.
Nwosu who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Guinks Investment, said any of their members who failed to comply with this new order will either be prosecuted or have his goods confiscated by the association.
The marketer said the association is finalising plans to storm Ghana any moment from now, particularly to confront those local television stations who are illegally airing Nigerian films without obtaining permission from the right owners.
Also, given the problem associated with “second tier market” (where a producer is compelled to observe a three-month grace before releasing his film into the market in a large quality), Nwosu said the association has decided to reversed the trend.
Film owners, according to him, are now free to release their films into the market without necessarily observing the mandatory three months grace before doing so.
They will also be required to obtain censors’ board and copy right commission’s documents in addition to registering the film with the sum of N10,000 with the FVPMAN.
“In order to move the association forward, we have resolved to address the problem of second tier market.” FVPMAN boss further stated.**