Epic, according to the Longman Contemporary English Dictionary, is defined as ‘a book, poem, or film that tells a long story about brave actions and exciting events,’ writes TOFARATI IGE
Having being abreast of that definition for a long time, I was excited when I learnt that an epic channel was to debut on popular movie channel, Africa Magic on DSTV. I was expecting to see movies that would tell the stories of great men and events in the history of Africa. I thought it would be a nice initiative to teach our children that indeed, Africa has a rich and beautiful heritage by entertaining them with the rapturous exploits of our forebears.
You can imagine my shock and utter disappointment every time I tune my TV to that channel only to be regaled with mundane stories of Kings (Igwes) and the antics of their households. Most of these movies have nothing in them to be qualified as Epic.
It seems the content managers at Africa Magic believe that once a movie was shot in a village, and it has a king and servants in it, then it must be Epic. What a mis-education!
Perhaps, one can argue that Africa Magic is handicapped as a result of lack of content.
Stories should be our forte as Africans because of our rich history. Besides, we do not have the technical expertise that Hollywood has at its disposal.
Who will tell the stories of Moremi, Muritala Muhammed, Shehu Shagari, Aminu Kano, Thomas Sankara, Kwame Nkrumah, Nelson Mandela, MKO Abiola, Kudirat Abiola, Shaka Zulu, Ken Saro-Wiwa, and events like Maitestine riots, Otokoto saga, Biafra War, June 12, among others too numerous to mention here.
Pray tell, who will tell our stories? Since we have apparently given up the right of broadcasting our own tales, then we shouldn’t complain when foreigners twist the facts.
Nollywood is more comfortable making films like ‘It’s Don Jazzy Again,’ ‘Beyonce and Rihanna,’ and other movies bereft of creativity.
That is why a school of thought says Nollywood has nothing to celebrate; that it is more of hype than substance. It is very easy to agree with that.