Okay, so I finally took the time to go through the MOPPICON (Motion Picture Practitioners Council Of Nigeria) bills,
as sent to me by my friend, colleague and brother C.j. ‘Fiery’ Obasi after he had put up some write up about the bill which generated quite some buzz, ‘Segun Odejimi immediately posted the write up on TNS. While reading the bill, believe me, I actually found myself laughing most part of it, not because the bill is funny but because it is too funny to be actualized. Let me Introduce Myself, my name is Deejay Sa’id, a young Independent, AIFF, BON award nominee creative filmmaker. Let me not bore you talking about the segment of the bill that deals with the whole council registration and inauguration process which seems like some persons want to enrich their pockets (laughing), but the part that wants to terminate the new comers. So I have to be a member of this MOPPICON to make film, else I go to jail, seriously? (mind you, I’m still laughing), well, be ready to send thousands to jail. Just when I am about to release a film that I have spent close to a year working so hard to make, a film that I believe will speak the revolution we are talking about, something different from the usual, a creative thought, then I wake up to this. Let me ask, who needs a bill in the first place? Oris Ihidero asked this same question, where in the world is it done? why will anyone want to regulate creative thinking? where is the freedom to express the work of art? where is the democracy? Oh! now I have to go sit and pass some exam to become a full member of MOPPICON, that’s ofcause after undergoing training for some years from any of the old hands, which if you ask me I feel we are far better than(at least most of them), then I can make film (now I really can’t control the laughter), what professional allowance will I get after subjecting me to all these unnecessary process? when we have a lot of “A list” filmmakers today, even in Hollywood with no background in filmmaking, who cares how you make your film as long as it comes out well, the end they say justifies the means. So what happens to Hollywood movies in the country? they are very free to operate, right? but I can’t in my own country. I read Feyi Fawehinmi’s write up about MOPICON and was quite impress with the way he analyzed and dissected it.
I am not very good with belonging to Associations, councils and all of that, I am just a filmmaker who wants to make film. This bill will do us more harm than good. Yes, we are for making good and creative film, but not to send us parking in the name of regulating. do you know the number of filmmakers in the country? do you know how many people this industry have employed? only for some few to sit and draft a bill that will push people out of the game, there is no way this is going to come to live. If they really want to help, we have so many pressing issues they can tackle ranging from piracy to having a structure for the market.
However, We have to go beyond talking on social media, to taking drastic action, like being present at the hearing come April 8, 2016 at the National Theater to challenge the bill, signing a petition against this “MOPPICON nonsense” (in Giovanni’s word), though I concur. We have to collectively stand and say #NoToMoppicon (now I’m rolling on the floor laughing). What do you think?
Twitter and Instagram @mrdeejayville