Juliet Asante Urges All Ghana's Embassies Abroad To Show Ghanaian Movies To Their Patrons

The Executive Director of Black Star International Film Festival, Ms Juliet Asante, has urged the government to adopt a policy that would require all Ghana’s embassies abroad show only Ghanaian movies to patrons who call on them.

Ms Asante, who is also the Chief Executive of Eagle Productions, said showing Ghanaian films to audiences globally would create a way to connect, engage and open up interest in Ghana.

In addition, she said it would not only provide the opportunity to showcase the country and its culture, but it would also open up avenues for the global community to connect with Ghana, understand and appreciate its culture.

According to her, the initiative would subsequently lead to improvement in tourism and investment.

Ms Asante was speaking to the media at a press briefing in Accra on the maiden edition of the Black Star International Film Festival which is schedule to be held from August 25 to 28, 2016.

The festival is on the theme: “Shaping the mind of a generation,” and will be free for people aged 20 years and below.

Over the exhibition period, there would be parties, film screenings, panel sessions, drive-ins, and fun trips. The Silverbird Cinemas, NAFTI, James Town and the Black Star Square are venues where the films are scheduled to be screened.

Films and documentaries from Ghana, Morocco, Tanzania, South Africa, Nigeria, Uganda and Sierra Leone would be shown.

Other countries that will be featured are Germany, the Czech Republic, Greece, Italy and the United Kingdom.

Ms Asante made the suggestion earlier in March 2016 when she led a delegation to the Ministry of Communications where she called on the government to come up with a policy underpinning a commitment to allow Ghanaian films to be shown in Ghana’s embassies abroad.

The Deputy Minister of Communications, Mr Ato Sarpong, who received the delegation at the time, pledged to have a policy in place that would push for an actionable plan, in conjunction with other ministries, to have the country’s embassies abroad to show Ghanaian films as a tool for engagement.

“Films are sources of national pride”

According to Ms Asante, committing to the policy alone was not enough if there was no legal backing to have it implemented.

“Films are a source of national pride and identity, a culture diplomacy tool, employment creator and an investment draw. It is our hope that Ghana will take advantage of this opportunity,” she said.

She cited Nigeria and South Africa as some of the African countries that were making huge revenues from the film industry.

“In Nigeria, the film industry is the second largest employer after agriculture and contributes over nine billion dollars to GDP annually,” she said.

Ms Asante said South Africa had also made significant strides by passing friendly policies that attracted lots of co-productions.

She said with Ghana’s movie industry picking up so fast, it was important that the country learnt from others.

She said the film festival was expected to provide a platform that would bridge gaps in the movie industry in Ghana as well as explore financing relationships between filmmakers and financial institutions.

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Last modified on Saturday, 13 August 2016 14:25
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