As part of the activities leading to the annual Best of Nollywood (BON) Awards, the board and organisers have announced that the book reading for the year will be hosted by the First Lady of Kogi State, Mrs Rashida Yahaya Bello at the State House in Lokoja.
The book reading, which is a BON Awards annual tradition, is an event held for children in the year’s host state for the awards.
Aside the fact that it is the first time after the COVID-19 pandemic that BON Awards would be hosting a reading, the event, as usual, is scheduled to coincide with the 2021 Children’s Day celebration.
For this year, the organisers of the leading pan-Nigerian film industry awards have revealed that the official book of the year is Chinua Achebe’s ‘The Trouble with Nigeria’, and over 1000 children from all over Kogi State are expected at the event where they would be read to by the First Lady of the state, supported by a number of Nollywood actors.
Billed to attend the event and celebrate with the children are Nollywood screen stars like Aishat Lawal, Ali Nuhu, Lateef Adedimeji, and Yomi Fash-Lanso. Others include Gbenga Adeyinka, Fathia Williams, Adebimpe Oyebade, Biola Adebayo and Efe Irele.
The reading, which is a prelude to the events that lead up to the awards come December 11, marks the beginning of the 13th BON Awards activities for the year.
It would be remembered that on Tuesday, March 2, Governor Yahaya Bello had claimed hosting rights for 2021 edition of the awards while receiving a delegation of Nollywood actors and journalists.
Speaking on the reading, BON Awards founder Seun Oloketuyi revealed that “this is an important part of the series of events that make up BON because it is for the children, and we are glad that the First Lady graciously accepted to host the reading.”
Meanwhile, the trio of entertainment industry stakeholders, Dele Momodu, Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, and Seun Oloketuyi are set to produce one of the biggest biopics of our time titled ‘Baba Kekere’, a movie chronicling the life and times of elder statesman and revered politician, late Lateef Kayode Jakande.
While a release date and timeline is yet to be announced by the producers, it has been revealed that ‘Baba Kekere’ the biopic is to be directed by maestro filmmaker and storyteller, Tade Ogidan, with pre-production of the movie scheduled for May 2021.
Jakande, who passed on in February 2021 at the age of 91, was a man of many parts in his lifetime; he was a Nigerian journalist who became governor of Lagos State, and later Minister of Works.
The movie, which according to the producers is a one-of-a-kind biopic will dramatise the life of Jakande drawing on both public and private facts.
Dele Momodu, speaking on the reason why a biopic on Jakande was necessary said, “One of the things we want to achieve with Baba Kekere, the movie, is that these days, many youths believe that going into politics is merely a means to an end. They believe it is all for money and not service. The life of Jakande is a perfect example that shows that many times, politics is not about money, it is about service”.
For Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, she explained that biopics are important kind of films to make because they remind people of historical lessons. A movie about the life and times of a phenomenal man like Jakande would be a thorough lesson for those coming after who did not get the privilege of experiencing him.
On the choice of the title, Oloketuyi shared that Baba Kekere was a fond moniker for Jakande. “Many people referred to him fondly as Baba Kekere. He was an honest, humble politician, and till his death, he was dedicated to the service of humanity and remained a friend to the people, hence the nickname.”
Oloketuyi further revealed that his dedication to the people is one of the reasons the producers came to do a movie to honour him. “The process started about two weeks after his death, and the family has given us approval for the movie to be done,” he shared.