• Tuesday, May 28, 2024
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Chatroom movie premieres with relatable storyline

Chatroom movie premieres with relatable storyline

Over the weekend, Chatroom, a timely movie set against the background of a reality television show, premiered in style at Wheatbaker Hotel Ikoyi.

The contemporary 98-minute star-studded movie boasts of multiple award-winning actors such as Tony Umez, Omawumi Megbele, Akpororo, Odunlade Adekola, Rykardo Agbor, Sambasa Nzeribe, Vivian Anani, Ibrahim Suleiman, and is produced by Peju Ibekwe with Adesuwa Onyenokwe as its associate producer. The movie also stars Canadian trained actor, Nengi Adoki and Israeli actor, singer and dancer, Ronya Man, Ghanaian actor, Kobby Acheampong, Cameroonian actor and dancer, Lea Dibebe, actor and author, Damilare Kuku, among many others. It has unique themes of the power of one’s voice to transform society, gender-based violence, and mental health, among others.

Written and directed by Chike Ibekwe, ‘Chatroom’, which is inspired by true life events, tells the inspiring story of Ebiere, who enters a dancing reality show to escape the haunting ghost of her past. Fate, however, has other plans for her as the experiences in the house blow up in her face with far reaching consequences.

Set in Lagos, Chatroom tells a very relatable story, which has embedded in it, subjects of envy to admiration, resilience in the midst of pain, fear of trusting, denial to acceptance, love notwithstanding hurts, hope for a better future; all of these are beautifully crafted in the narrative making it an audience’s delight while addressing these critical issues. It also gives us a peek into what happens behind the scenes of a reality television show which audiences do not usually get to see.

Akpororo and Odunlade spare no emotion as they give us their best in this first of its kind movie with their comical expressions, which will leave viewers reeling with laughter intermittently while also taking in the essence of the movie. We also see Adesuwa Onyenokwe in a cameo role for the first time in a Nigerian movie doing her thing.

The premiere was graced by dignitaries including; Pauline Tallen, minister of Women Affairs and Social Development; Chizor Malize, managing director/CEO, Financial Institutions Training Centre (FITC), women leaders, actors, comedians, journalists and others.

Read also: Chatroom set for release on April 15 on afrocinema.tv

Speaking at the premiere, the minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, who was represented by Friya Kimde Bulus, director, Gender Affairs in the ministry, in a keynote address, said that the sustenance of gender equality perspectives should be coordinated in the plans, projects and programmes of government, adding that the event could not have come at a better time than now.

According to her, the demise of popular music singer, Osinachi Nwachukwu, is a sad reminder of the issue of Gender Based Violence (GBV) in the country.

“As you are all aware, the issues of GBV have been on the increase in Nigeria, with the latest being the death of the popular gospel singer, late Osinachi Nwachukwu,” the minister said.

She expressed delight to be part of the premiere of Chatroom and commended the organisers for a job well done, adding that this will be geared toward meeting the targets of gender mainstreaming into policies across the country.

The movie director and scriptwriter, Chike Ibekwe noted that he chose to write a story of hope, rather than that of silence and misery that most victims of sexual abuse go through. He also emphasised that help can be available, and that all people have to do is to look at the right places.

The premiere also featured the launch of the virtual Chatroom on the movie website, www.chatroomthemovie.com, a safe place where victims of abuse or mental health issues can break their silence and get needed help. The Chatroom can be accessed as a guest, that is, anonymously, for those that do not want to disclose their identity. The counselling on the Chatroom is supported by the Nigerian Institute of Counsellors, while the toll-free line and cases that need additional attention beyond counselling ranging from medical to legal cases will be supported by Women at Risk International Foundation (WARIF).

According to the UNHCR, Gender-Based Violence refers to harmful acts directed at an individual based on their gender. It is rooted in gender inequality, the abuse of power and harmful norms.

Gender-based violence (GBV) is a serious violation of human rights and a life-threatening health and protection issue. During displacement and times of crisis, the threat of GBV significantly increases for women and girls.