This past weekend, NYU Kimmel was the meeting ground for renowned Nigerians and Africans in film, media and fashion. Cultural Confidence, the second annual forum of the Nollywood Diaspora Film Series, included the US premiere of highly acclaimed Nollywood film, October 1; and screenings of Village Voice critics pick Supreme Price, Mother of George and Half a Yellow Sun. Nollywood great, Kunle Afolayan, and Hollywood actors Gbenga Akinnagbe and Adepero Oduye also spoke on the intersection of film, cultural confidence and Nollywood.
October 1, which is widely described as the best Nollywood film in history, was the centerpiece of the forum. A psychological thriller set around the time of Nigeria’s independence from Britain, the film made its international debut at Cultural Confidence. With stunning visuals and a mixed cast of veteran and newbie actors, Kunle Afolayan’s best work yet beautifully captured Nigeria’s history and cultures, while projecting a complex future for Africa’s leading economy. Afolayan took questions from the audience following the screening.
Afolayan, Akinnagbe and Oduye along with other renowned cultural ambassadors addressed the issues of Nollywood’s growth, cultural confidence in the African Diaspora, Nigeria’s future and more in two panel discussions: Cultural Confidence (Acquiring and Negotiating Authentic Cultural Idenities) and Couture Culture (What Makes Fashion African?)
Also present at the forum were Khafila Abiola, daughter of Nigeria’s first democratically elected president and subject of the film Supreme Price—MKO Abiola; Supreme Price producer and director, Joanna Lipper, award-winning filmmaker and Harvard lecturer; Awam Amkpa, NYU professor, actor and playwright; Wunmi Olaiya, international recording artist and award-winning fashion designer; Loza Maleombho, award-winning fashion designer and creative director of her self-titled clothing line; Kukua Odoi, founder of African Prints in Fashion blog; Busayo Olupona, creative director of Busayo.
NDFS Cultural Confidence was sponsored by VLISCO, Holland Textiles, Sonna Textiles, Africa Magic GO, Yoruba Cultural Institute, NYU Africana Studies. Partners included Indigo Tongues and Liberated People.
WATCH Kunle Afolayan on AriseTV
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