Motion Pictures with Chidumga: How the veterans saved Nollywood in 2016
While most of these veterans turned up to make classic comebacks, the rest returned to make a movie/TV show bearable.
This started as a conversation with a colleague. We were surprised when we couldn’t recall off the top of our heads whether there was a great 2016 movie, which wasn’t buoyed or led by a veteran.
Digging into the data, we came to the conclusion that in stark contrast to the last two years, the veterans played a huge role in the Nollywood success story of 2016. While some veterans simply turned up to make a great comeback, others returned to make a movie or TV series watchable. But, despite which veteran showed up to save the day, Nollywood is the ultimate winner.
Richard Mofe Damijo, an actor who has starred in classics including "Violated," "Keeping Faith," "Checkmate" among others, returned in 2016 and managed to be absolutely everywhere, starring in recommendable productions. In "Oloibiri," Mofe-Damijo and Olu Jacobs lead a talented cast as Boma AKA Gunpowder and Elder Timipre, delivering spot-on performances.
Nkem Owoh saves "Ghana Must Go." A movie we all strolled into the cinema in anticipation of a worthwhile comedy. For over 20 minutes, viewers were ‘entertained’ by IK Ogbonna’s supposed funny performance; an eye-rolling performance that threatened to detach corneas. The movie failed to be faithful to its genre until Nkem Owoh m ade an appearance. Alongside Ghana’s Kofi Adjorlolo, a movie was saved.
Bimbo Akintola doesn’t save "93 Days" because it needed no saving. She simply turned up as the late Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh, delivering a captivating, charming and powerful performance that won’t be forgotten in a while. You could watch "93 Days" on mute and still feel the emotions play out on Akintola’s face as she delivers a powerful performance.
"The Wedding Party" is one of my favourite movies of the year, and the only reason I have seen it more than once is Sola Sobowale. It’s impossible to absolutely say she saved the movie. "The Wedding Party" would have been a good one without her, but it wouldn’t have been "The Wedding Party" which is currently breaking box office records and has got people still talking. It would have just been that comedy movie which was released in December 2016 by four giant production companies.
ALSO READ: 5 REASONS TO LOVE SOLA SOBOWALE
It is difficult to say where "Skinny Girl in Transit" is headed with its third season. It’s trying so hard to amuse and that’s not the web series viewers fell in love with. But in the midst of its hustle to be funny, Ngozi Nwosu as Mama Tiwa is still enough reason to refresh Ndani TV YouTube page every Friday. She saves the day and makes it easy to watch our favourite series gradually take a different turn.
Ramsey Nouah, Chidi Mokeme and Rita Dominic didn’t turn up to save a movie. They simply showed up to give viewers one of the best movies of the year – "76." Who else wished Mokeme got more screen time? But, despite the few times the actor showed up, he alongside Dominic and Nouah, delivered applaudable performances in a movie that won’t be forgotten in a hurry.
Ireti Doyle was also present in 2016. Just like RMD, it seemed like the veteran was everywhere. As Funlayo Johnson in "The Arbitration," Doyle leads a stellar cast.
Ireti Doyle handles her character as a no-nonsense professional lawyer with perfection and class, delivering one of the best performances of the year.
"Wives on Strike" apart from being a movie with a message, can be classified as a comedy because of Kenneth Okonkwo.
The "Living in Bondage" steers clear of cliché, making the audience laugh while passing an important message. He saves the movie and steers it towards its claimed genre; comedy.
While some of these veterans didn’t get an Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards nomination, they showed up in 2016, delivered classic cinematic comebacks, saved movies, saved Nollywood and gave us some of the best movies of the year.
While 2016 movies like "A Trip to Jamaica" and "Ayamma" failed to get a saviour, 2016 offered quite a number of movies with our favourite veterans.