The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (the Oscars) has extended the Nigerian official selection committee’s deadline to select a movie to represent Nigeria by one week.
The committee set up to select an indigenous movie, over the last month, has faced backlash and termed “fraudulent” by the executive director of the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), Adedayo Thomas, due to an internal crisis as they failed to submit any film for consideration, after declining all submitted movies, including Kunle Afolayan’s Anikulapo, EbonyLife’s Elesin Oba (The King’s Horseman) and Adebayo Tijani and Tope Adebayo’s King of Thieves.
Sharing his excitement on the extension, popular Nigerian filmmaker Kunle Afolayan tweeted, “It’s just been confirmed that The academy ‘OSCARS’ has given the Nigerian Oscars selection committee a week extension to revote and represent a film to represent Nigeria by October 21st latest. God’s hand is in this one I believe! Anikulapo on my mind.”
Following the chaotic decision-making process of the committee, two committee members, culture and film Journalist Shaibu Husseini and filmmaker Mildred Okwo resigned amid “rash, intemperate and baseless allegations” of trying to induce votes made by the committee’s chair Chineze Anyaene-Abonyi against EbonyLife’s Mo Abudu.
In a letter addressed to Anyaene-Abonyi, by the Oscars, a one-week extension to reconvene and conclude the three films in contention was granted to the committee.
“The International Feature Film Executive Committee reviewed the issues regarding the Nigerian Official Selection Committee (the Selection Committee on behalf of the country of Nigeria) and has granted an extension of one week with the deadline of October 21, 2022 at 5:00 PM Pacific Time,” the Oscars letter stated.
It further said that the entire “approved Nigerian Official Selection Committee will be required to all reconvene and make a final determination regarding a submission to the International Feature Film category for the 95th Academy Awards. The final determination must be delivered by the approved Nigerian Official Selection Committee chair and co-chair.”
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