Film

A Cool New Comedy Asks "What Does It Mean To Be Nigerian?"

Abba T. Makama pushes the boundaries of Nigerian film in his new comedy, 'Green White Green.'


Abba T. Makama's 'Green White Green' (All images courtesy of Makama)

Nigerian filmmaker Abba T. Makama wants to capture the essence of what it feels like to be Nigerian with his latest project, a satire he calls a "beautiful mosaic of madness." Green White Greena nod to the iconic colors of the country's flag—tells the story of three young boys who embark on a radical journey to make a film inspired by Nigeria's history.

Makama tells Okayafrica over email that the film is an attempt to explore common Nigerian social and political views through humor. The three main characters come from each of Nigeria's major ethnic groups. "This formula," says Makama, "automatically creates room to play around with various ethnic and cultural stereotypes. It’s also a story about classism, how certain people from certain economic brackets think and behave."

According to Makama the film will be released in the second quarter of 2016. In addition to a Nigerian theatrical run, he also plans to tour the film around Nigeria's universities. "It's a film made by young people and created for young people," Makama tells us. His colleague and friend, Nigerian filmmaker and 37th State founder Bolaji Kekere Ekun, called it a "patriotic piece." Makama agrees.

But should Green White Green be classified as a Nollywood picture? After all, Makama recently directed an Al Jazeera documentary on the Nigerian film industry. "All I can say, is that it’s a film produced in Nigeria by Nigerians," says Makama. "People have various definitions of what a Nollywood production is. It's relative." Makama also says there’s a new movement in the film industry of progressive digital filmmakers who won’t compromise on quality despite the infinite challenges. "We just want to make films that people from any part of the world will enjoy and get it. I guess I’m part of that movement," he says. "We are small but we definitely have a voice and it’s going to get LOUDER. My sister jokingly refers to us as 'the afro_hipster filmmakers.' I disagree."

To Makama, being Nigerian means "being part of a melting pot of madness, beauty, diversity, heritage and all that cool stuff."

"Being Nigerian is like most people's stereotypical view of Italian Americans. There’s this dark cloud that comes from our history of corruption but there’s also a lot great stuff from our culture, food, music and arts. Nigeria has created a Nobel Prize winner, genius physicians and scientist, iconic musicians. I mean one of the wealthiest men on the planet is NIGERIAN."

Watch the trailer for Abba T. Makama's 'Green White Green' below. Keep up with the project via the film's Facebook page.

Abba T. Makama's 'Green White Green' 

Abba T. Makama's 'Green White Green' 

Abba T. Makama's 'Green White Green' (Courtesy of Makama)

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Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Qatar Museums

Influential Louis Vuitton And Off-White Designer Virgin Abloh, Dies at 41

The popular American designer had been battling a rare form of cancer in private for several years.

The fashion industry has lost a talented, unique, and boundary-pushing influence this weekend.

41-year-old designer Virgil Abloh has died after a 2 year battle with a rare form of cancer, a statement from his associates LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said on Sunday. Abloh, founder of luxury streetwear brand Off-White, and artistic director of men's wear at French fashion house Louis Vuitton leaves his wife Shannon, and 2 children - Lowe and Grey. Chairman and CEO of LVMH Bernard Arnault said in a statement, "We are all shocked after this terrible news. Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom." "The LVMH family joins me in this moment of great sorrow, and we are all thinking of his loved ones after the passing of their husband, their father, their brother, or their friend," he added.

After the news broke on Sunday, Abloh started trending on Twitter, with fans of the designer remembering his influence on music, art, and fashion. The 1990s saw Abloh DJ and the creative director once told The Guardian in a 2016 interview, "When the phone is off, I play my favorite songs really loud for myself, and I'm not talking to anyone. I'm not managing anything. It's just like a time when I can listen to music… I'll be DJing after I'm done designing or doing anything else." Virgil got his hands into designing album artworks after strumming up a friendship with American rapper Kanye West before becoming the creative director of West's DONDA Creative House. More recently known for his creative streetwear brand 'Off-White' the designer became popular among fashion-conscious youngsters and will forever be immortalized.

A statement posted to Abloh's Instagram explained that "Virgil chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture"

Friends, fans, and colleagues took to social media to share their well-wishes for Virgil as he transitions to his next destination.



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