I don’t know whether Nollywood is still male dominated —Uduak Isong, Filmmaker
From a very young age, Nollywood filmmaker, Uduak Isong, has been writing scripts and lyrics which she had hoped the late Michael Jackson would buy.
Although her Michael Jackson dream didn’t come to pass, she has made a name for herself in the fiercely competitive Nigerian movie industry.
“I started writing from a very young age, about 10. I was writing poems and lyrics I had hoped Michael Jackson would one day buy.
“As I grew older, I moved to prose; short stories and essays and in 2006, I was one of the winners in the Commonwealth short story writing competition. Screenplay came years later when I watched a Nigerian movie years ago,” she recalled.
Continuing, the soft-spoken producer, who has successful produced over 20 gross selling movies shares her success story and passion for raising new talents.
“I wrote screenplays as part time while I studied and worked. After my Masters in University of Leicester , I returned to Nigeria to pursue a full time career in Nigeria.
“I produced my first film OKON LAGOS in 2011. It was a major commercial success, breaking sales records and winning awards. The actor who played the character of Okon in the film is now known by the name OKON LAGOS.
“I’ve since gone on to produce 20 other films notably Kokomma, Falling, Desperate Housegirls, Lost in London, Back Up Wife etc.
“Adesua Etomi won the AMVCA Best actress for her role in Falling, Belinda Effah won the AMAA award for best new actress for her role in Kokomma.”
“Several of the other films have received awards and nominations.
“I am also interested in raising new talents and crew. Several of my movies star new actors in lead or supporting roles many of whom have gone on to do very well in the industry. I believe in continuity as such it’s important to me that I invest in people whom I can one day pass the baton”, she added.
Wondering, how this creative mind copes in a male dominated industry, pulling very strong, Uduak assured that she doesn’t think about her gender as a filmmaker
“I don’t know if Nollywood is still male dominated.
“There are several women now in positions of authority and some of the biggest films in the past few years have been by women or in partnership with women so some of the challenges women faced earlier are now quite limited. I don’t think about my gender as a filmmaker. I just see myself as a filmmaker.”