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Are Nigerian Celebrity actors taking the jobs of Cameroonian actors ?

kampiiproductions | 30.10.2021 | 0 | 237 INSIDER with Kampii

Are Nigerian Celebrity actors taking the jobs of our

Cameroonian actors ?

The month of October has witnessed the influx of several renowned Nigerian celebs especially movie stars into Cameroon for different movie projects. Some of these stars include Nkem Owoh for the movie The Planter’s Plantation, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Bimbo Ademoye and Efa Iwara for the movie Dear God, IK Ogbonna and Linda Effah for the movie Kuvah. And amidst all these, a Nigerian MC, Ebuka Obi-Uchendu is getting set to host the Bonteh Digital Media Awards and reportedly being paid close to 12 Million FCFA to host the event.

Well, before this set, we have had other Nigerian and foreign movie stars over the last few years including Mike Godson, Richard Mofe Damijo, Iretiola Doyle, Ramsey Nouah, Nadia Buari, John Dumelo and more. Only that the presence of this current set of Nollywood actors has created some sought of brouhaha as fans and other stakeholders of the Cameroon movie industry seem to have conflicting views on the subject. While some think it is a laudable initiative as it is a way of selling our movie industry better, others think it is a way of belittling our local movie stars as some of these foreign stars are always given the lead roles and become the central of attention in every movie they feature in.

 

One of the movie stakeholders who believes Cameroonian movie stars deserve better than playing second fiddle to Nollywood stars in their own country is actor Ni Alenne Menget. Recently, in a series of social media posts, he called out upcoming actors and fans for always sidelining established Cameroonian actors on movie set and rather making foreign actors feel more important by rushing to them for pictures and feeling overly excited around them but would only approach their own Cameroonian movie stars when they are done with foreign stars.

According to Alenne Menget, Cameroon has the best movie stars and no one can tell a Cameroonian story better than Cameroonians themselves. He went on to prove this by mentioning the 2018 Golden Movie Awards in Ghana were he beat top Nigerian movie stars like Ramsey Nouah to win the award.

Another entertainer who apparently shares Alenne Menget’s view is Cameroonian Comedian, Old Pancho who has been very vocal and critical of stakeholders of the Cameroon entertainment industry who bring in foreign stars into Cameroon for movies and music shows.

There are others who however think bringing foreign actors into Cameroon for movies is actually a strategic way of boosting the industry. One of them is Delly Singah Philips, who in one of her Facebook posts said it is high time Cameroonians accept that Nigerians are ahead, their position is indisputable and they have paid their dues and all we need to do is learn.

Now, bringing foreign movie stars to Cameroon for movies, is it worth it? Do our Cameroonian movie stars feel belittled by the fact that most of these foreign movie stars are given lead roles over them?

Well, whether we like it or not, the truth is, virtually all these actors coming into Cameroon are established actors known all over Africa and in other parts of the world. They have worked hard to build a name for themselves. Ebuka for example is an astute event host, host of the biggest show on the continent – BBN, one of the most sought after in Africa, a fashionista per excellence and a Lawyer with two master degrees. So, anyone, especially if they are looking at the subject from the perspective of the investors (movie makers, external investors and organizers of other entertainment shows) would see the benefits of involving such foreign stars in their projects.

First, these movie makers and event organizers are businessmen and their ultimate goal is not just to recover the money they have put into these projects but to make profit too. How else would they continue to fund other projects if they can’t make enough money from every project? If the presence of these foreign stars will help increase their audience and attract other sponsors and big movie platforms like Netflix , then, they won’t hesitate to bring them in.

Secondly the fact that all Cameroonian movies on the giant streaming platform, Netflix (The Fisherman’s Diary, Therapy, A Man for the Weekend) all have faces of foreign actors in them only goes to show their importance in helping the industry get the recognition it deserves.

Third, Nigeria is the giant of Africa when it comes to entertainment. They have the largest showbiz market in Africa and getting them involved in our Cameroonian projects is sure a great way of expanding, showcasing and selling our industry and actors. These foreign stars do share these Cameroonian projects they are involved in on their social media pages where they have millions of followers.

Of course, we have very talented actors in Cameroon who are doing well for themselves too and we celebrate them but we cannot take away the fact that Nigeria has the biggest entertainment industry in Africa and we are not at that level yet. So collaborating with them doesn’t mean we do have the best in Cameroon. It is in actual fact an opportunity for us to grow, expand and conquer other parts of Africa and the world. After all, we have Cameroonians like Okawa Shaznay in Nollywood who are topping the Nigerian film industry.

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