Former Governors of Ekiti and Lagos States, Dr Kayode Fayemi, CON, and Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, and former Group Managing Director and CEO of First Bank of Nigeria Limited Dr Bisi Onasanya were some of the dignitaries that joined renowned journalist, Steve Ayorinde, during the unveiling of his latest book, 30: Three Decades Of The New Nigerian Cinema – A Bystander’s Verdict. The book which chronicles the remarkable growth of the Nigerian film industry, also known as Nollywood, was unveiled at an exclusive event on Thursday, May 18, 2023, at the Mike Adenuga Center Ikoyi, Lagos.
From timeless classics like Asewo To Re Mecca, Living in Bondage, Glamour Girls and Mortal Inheritance to recent box office hits like King of Boys and Eyimofe; faces such as the legendary Taiwo Ajai-Lycett, Pete Edochie and Richard Mofe-Damijo to the scintillating Bolanle Austen-Peters and dashing Damini Egbuson, among others, 30: Three Decades of The New Nigerian Cinema – A Bystander’s Verdict presents a vibrant panorama of the films and personalities that have reshaped and revolutionised the Nigerian film industry in the past three decades.
Presenting the book, Steve Ayorinde, whose compilation of the collection is borne out of years of honing his trade as a cub reporter, editor and columnist, editor-in-chief, member of the jury for film festivals and commissioner, shared the importance of collaboration in the future. “The next 30 years has to be a concerted effort of all quarters of the industry – the artistic and technical aspects collaborating with the governmental and corporate sectors.”
The launch event was chaired by Dr Kayode Fayemi, CON, who commended Steve Ayorinde for his efforts in his opening speech: “I must commend you for bearing witness to history, and ensuring we do not lose a sense of who we are as Nigerians. I also need to commend all those who have excelled in this industry and are promoting our culture.”
The event also had in attendance top government officials, the Director-General of the Nigerian Copyright Commission, Dr John Asein; Brian Etuk, Director of Special Duties, Nigeria Film Corporation (representing the Managing Director / CEO of the Nigeria Film Corporation, Chidia Maduekwe), among other.
The royal father of the day, HRM. Oba Olufolarin Ogunsanwo, Alare of Ilera kingdom, Epe Division Lagos State, expressed his delight, noting that it was a significant milestone in the growth of the Nigerian film industry.
Ayorinde is a renowned journalist and former Lagos State Commissioner for Information & Strategy and later Tourism, Arts and Culture in Lagos State between 2015 and 2019.
A prolific writer who has written several books, his works include A Critic’s Timeless Reports, Abokede: The Man, The Hill, The City and more. His latest, 30: Three Decades Of The New Nigerian Cinema – A Bystander’s Verdict” is a must-read for all film enthusiasts, researchers, and film practitioners.