Nollywood Films Screened During International Education Week

By Caitlin Burns | December 9, 2015

The Arcadia community was treated to a sample of African cinema as part of International Education Week.

In November, the five African films screened on campus showcased award-winning movies ranging from a story of women traders in the early twentieth century to a violent drug thriller based on a series of killings in 1980s New Orleans.

The African film industry has expanded greatly in recent years, according to Roland Adjovi, assistant professor of Historical and Political Studies, particularly the Nigerian film industry, or Nollywood. It is ranked in the top three film industries in terms of volume, alongside Hollywood and Bollywood, and industries in Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, and Tanzania also are seeing increases in production due to the low cost of shooting and the rising quality of affordable, high-definition cameras.

Adjovi, with filmmaker Akpor Otebele, organized the Arusha-Africa Film Festival after teaching African Cinema at the former Arcadia Center in Tanzania. Otebele, who previously taught at Arcadia, returned to lead a discussion before this year’s screening of Sia: The Dream of the Python.

By showing and discussing the films, Adjovi “hopes that students will spend a good time away from the clichés on Africa” typically portrayed in the media, he said.

“[The films] give them an opportunity to learn more about Africa that we could not tell them through the courses run in the Pan-African Studies Minor,” said Adjovi, who organized the Nollywood screenings.