#Ashesi University Alumnus + Avant-gardist + Digerati + Writer + Design Enthusiast + Social Media Promoter + Chelsea FC fan + Made in Ghana
While on Facebook today I saw this status update from you Leila:
I listened to peacefm’s entertainment review last week and they were going on and on about how a movie that has not been watched by the public not qualify for awards and people were texting the most stupid comments I’ve ever heard in my life. At the end of the day, they were all talking about Ties That Bind. And yet when I say I’m done making movies in Ghana, people gather round to offer advice. who wants to be dealing with this kind of drama everyday? Bottom line, publicity is publicity.
But let me drop some knowledge on these folks. The general public has NO business voting for awards. Why? it will become subjective and fraudulent. So NO business whatsoever. A Jury, consisting of learned professionals are the people who determine who wins an award. Unless of course a category has been deemed opened to public vote.
Secondly, any movie that falls within the criteria of the awards qualifies to enter, be considered and go on to win an award. I’d appreciate it if these people just come out openly to say why is Leila’s movie being considered for an award and stop the drama of dedicating an entire radio program to me and my work under veils of utter nonsense. I have a really bad headache, and I’m not feeling well at all so I’ll spare my real thoughts.
Don’t worry, after this, you won’t see anymore of my work in your precious country which I’m led to believe is no longer my country too by virtue of certain utterances. It is well.
My thoughts? Wikipedia’s page on Leila Djansi has this to say about Ghanaian recognition for your work:
“At the first Ghana Movie Awards in 2011, Djansi’s Sinking Sands was the biggest winner, receiving “Best Art Direction”, “Best Costume”, “Best West African Film” and “Best Picture”. Sinking Sands was nominated in 14 categories.
Djansi’s work and contribution to the Ghana film industry has been recognized by UNiFEM Ghana, The African Women Development Fund, The Ghana Musicians Association and other social issue minded communities.”
I listened to you speak at Barcamp at Ashesi last year, about the need for us to start sharing our African story more with Golden Boabab Literary Prize founder, Deborah Ahenkorah. And I do remember some people saying they loved Sinking Sands and the fact that it was such a beautiful movie. It was a wonderful session, with people encouraging you to keep up your ever so avant-garde African storytelling. I’m sure all the people in this session were Ghanaians.
So, with huge respect to (and sympathy for) your frustration, I found it most painful that a local radio station and a few people out of a 24 million population could so easily cause this knee-jerk post; and push you to abandon a larger community of people who appreciate, support and NEED what you do – if only to remind them that a renaissance is possible.
Also, Peace FM is hardly the IMDb in these parts. I doubt any of the show’s hosts have produced any major movies (or any movies at all for that matter). Their opinion is most likely just that – not a yardstick for movie awards. This comparison may be off, but I find it unlikely that Wyck Godfrey would stop producing Twilight in the U.S just because a few blogs refer to the movie(s) as an asinine story about a ‘depressed girl’ who couldn’t choose between a ‘dead man and a dog’.
For the greater good Leila, let’s keep the spirit alive. Don’t give up on ‘us’ so easily.
A big fan.