‘Indigenous films are not of inferior production quality’

Nollywood filmmaker, Thompson Makolo Jnr, has carved a niche for himself in the Igala film industry. In this interview, he speaks on his works, particularly , a new movie project, Dream, which will take the indigenous movie sector by storm.  Excerpts:


HOW did you come about the storyline for Dream?

The inspiration came to me while I was having my three-month professional career training at a film academy in Jos. We were, one day, given an assignment to write a story and unfortunately, the lecturer didn’t explain in detail the kind of story he wanted us to write. So I went ahead and wrote the story of my life. He wanted a story for a film and I wrote a normal life story. I felt embarrassed, that if I was told earlier what was expected of me, I would have known what to write about. I picked up the challenge and after the class, I went back, and in two hours, I came out with this story of a young man who has a dream to make a career. Dream is a drive that pushes you.


What could you say is the significance of this theme, since other films entertain, enlighten while others educate or inform.

This film is a combination of entertainment, information, education and inspirational. Because I believe that this film would interpret so many life stories of so many people. For every dream, there is rejection and also acceptance. A lot of us don’t get to our dream land because we are rejected at one time or the other. So it takes guts and strong will for people to live their dream and achieve their dream.

Some people are of the opinion that indigenous films are somewhat of an inferior in terms of quality of production and storyline.


How is Dream different from this assertion?

It is a standard feature-length film – 90 pages which is Hollywood standard. It is going to be the first Igala cinema film in Nollywood. Let me make this clear. At first, I thought it was something I could shoot for seven days. But by the time I had a meeting with my director, who is one of the best film directors in Africa in the name of Achor Yusuf, and he told me that the least we could shoot is 30 days. He reminded me that Hollywood shoots two pages per day, that is why they take that long to shoot. He said that if this film is to make the standard we are talking about, it has to be done in such a way that it will beat films from notable filmmakers.  Therefore, starting from last year, I embarked on a revolution to become an indigenous film maker in Nollywood. You know, as a Nollywood filmmaker, after ‘Chaduami’, which recorded a lot of success, I feel that I should move above what I did last year by coming up with this first Igala film in a cinema. We are targeting to get the whole African attention.


When are we expecting its premiere?

Well, we are currently in the pre-production process. I am in Abuja now for the arrangement of location, hotel accommodation, props and all of that, because we are shooting almost 80 per cent of the film in Abuja and 20 per cent in Lokoja. We are likely to be on set from the first week of May and we are shooting for about 30 days. For the premiere, because of the technicalities associated with this project, we are patient to take our time so as to get it done well.

However, we expect the premiere to happen in three big cities in Nigeria – Lagos, Abuja and Lokoja – around September or October this year. Thereafter, the film will officially drop in a cinema. After that, we plan to embark on a 20-campus tour in ten different state of the country.