Genevieve Nnaji’s “Lionheart,” will be representing Nigeria as Nollywood gets a seat at the 2020 Oscars.
After proper deliberation, the Nigerian Oscars Selection Committee (NOSC) has selected the actress’ “Lionheart” as Nigeria’s submission to the International Feature Film category of the 2020 Oscars.
The group announced this yesterday after a statutory vetting and subsequent voting of entries received from Nigerian filmmakers at home and abroad.
Produced by Chinny Onwugbenu, Chichi Nwoko, Genevieve Nnaji, and directed by Genevieve Nnaji, ‘Lionheart’ premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and was acquired on September 7, 2018, as first Netflix original film produced in Nigeria.
The film stars Pete Edochie, Genevieve Nnaji, Nkem Owoh, Onyeka Onwenu, Kanayo .O. Kanayo, Chika Okpala, Kalu Ikeagwu, Sanni Mu’azu, Yakubu Mohammed, Ngozi Ezeonu, Peter Okoye (P-Square), and Chibuzor Azubuike (Phyno).
Released worldwide on January 4, 2019 after a December 2018 theatrical release in Nigeria, ‘Lionheart’, which is Nnaji’s directorial debut, tells the story of a young woman, Adaeze Obiagu (Genevieve Nnaji), who becomes saddled with the responsibility of running her sick father’s business under the suffocating supervision of an uncle, played by Nkem Owoh. Adaeze’s competing business instincts and family obligations become a catalyst for drastic change not everyone is ready to embrace.
Chineze Anyaene, industry stakeholder, had this to say on how prepared Nigerian is for Oscar awards, “While we cannot say that what we have are the best that Nigeria is capable of producing, it is heart-lifting to know that, from the strength of the entries received this year, we are truly ready for the Oscars. Filmmakers are gradually considering the Oscar rules, and I have no doubt that it is going to be more competitive, going forward.”
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