• Tuesday, June 25, 2024
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Netflix interview – Shanty Town

Netflix interview – Shanty Town

LYNDA: Good afternoon

INI EDO: Hi, good afternoon.

LYNDA: My name is Linda, I work for BusinessDay newspaper, I write for a page called Netflix and Chill, it’s a weekend paper, every Saturday we talk about the latest movies that you can watch so you don’t have to scroll forever, and we just tell you what is really good and then you can just watch very easily. We have done that for over five years and that’s why we are here.

So, I’m going to be asking you some questions, thank you so much for having me.

CHICHI NWORAH: Nice to meet you

LYNDA: Thank you so much for having me, I’m going to be asking you questions around the new series, shanty town and I will like to start with you, Ini. It’s so good to see you after chief daddy and bad comments. I am so happy to see the role you played, to see the flip you, from the posh girl to the ‘street’ girl. It was really nice, why did you take on the role, and what was your reason for doing that?

INI EDO: I took on the role because I like challenges, I mean for a while, I have been a bit bored with the kind of roles that I have been given and when you don’t have things that inspire you, you sort of start to lose interest in things which has perhaps explained a little why I haven’t really been out there a lot, because I just kept looking for certain characters or certain roles that just wasn’t coming, for some reason. So, I said okay if I have an opportunity to make a film, I would definitely go for something that gives me that platform to be able to be the actor that I am, so that’s why I took it.

LYNDA: How long did it take you to prepare for that role? I saw you on low-cut, the way you acted was so real, and I fell in love with the language, I told myself that I really need to go and learn it, how long did it take you to prepare for that role?

INI EDO: This is so sweet, I’m blushing, I can’t even stop smiling. Okay, it took me a while, like 6 weeks of training for the fight, for the combat and all of that, because ideally I wanted it to look as organic as possible, I mean those were part of the challenges, the fact that it was also helping me, during the trainings, it helped me get into the mindset of Inem and of course speaking my language comes to me very naturally, and I love that everybody loves it.

LYNDA: You did a very good job.

INI EDO: Thank you.

LYNDA: Chichi, it was nice to see that you produced this movie, what would you say makes a good movie?

CHICHI NWORAH: Okay, so you can’t say specifically this is what makes a good movie, are you asking in terms of the story? Are you asking in terms of the technical aspect, what terms? Because now there’s the story wise and there’s the technical, so there are two aspects of film making that you can look into to know what makes a good movie, so when you want to say a film is good, first of all the story, how good and unique is the story, how beautiful is the story, you’ve seen shantytown, maybe episode one, two, but you can’t tell what happened at the end .

INI EDO: *laughs, at all.

CHICHI NWORAH: So, that is one of the things that you would look at, the suspense, you can’t predict, you can’t say later Inem died, or she was alive, or this happened to scar, until you get there.

INI EDO: Yes, the suspense, you can’t predict, it’s not the type of Nollywood that you can predict.

CHICHI NWORAHI: Then, another aspect of it is the technical side of it, the cinematography.

INI EDO: The sound, the picture.

CHICHI NWORAH: When Inem was kicking, it looked so real, it was cut and join, but you won’t know, so that’s the technical aspect, these are the things that makes a good film, the VFX, the guns. There are places you’ll see after you watch on Friday, there are scenes you’ll see and you’ll be amazed.

INI EDO: You’d be asking if it happened in Nigeria, scenes you only see in big block busters Hollywood movies.

CHICHI NWORAH: So, these are the things, the technical part of it, and the story.

LYNDA: Concerning the elements of a good movie you, for me I like a good story, when you have a good story, you just don’t forget, it doesn’t go away.

INI EDO: Yes, timeless.

LYNDA: You also mentioned cinematography, would you say that story is number one and very key?

CHICHI NWORAH: Very, very key and then how the story is told, that comes to direction, that comes to the actor’s capacity. So, why do you enjoy shanty town, the actors delivered, the director delivered.

INI EDO: The picture was beautiful to look at.

CHICHI NWORAH: So, the actors interpreted the roles well, you saw Ini and you believed everything she was doing, you saw Chidi and you believed everything, so the actors, the way they interpreted the roles, and the directing.

Read also: Reed Hastings steps down as co-CEO of Netflix

LYNDA: Chichi, what inspired you to produce shanty town?

CHICHI NWORAH: Shanty town, the concept. As a film producer, the first thing that comes to your mind is what we call concept idea, it’s called an original idea, as a producer you think about an original idea that you want to flesh out, on that original idea, what came to my mind was trying to speak up on the things that happen negatively in the society, what women are going through, what they are going through in some slums, it might be in our houses, we don’t know what people are going through to have freedom, to eat. One of them, when you see her, Salewa, there’s a reason she’s there, that’s Nancy’s character, even parents had to give up their children because they wanted to eat, so that’s what the original idea was, to speak up against these ill things happening in the society, that is affecting us at large.

LYNDA: I think the story was deep, and I’ve just seen 2 episodes and I can wonder what happened in the end, sometimes we live in one side of the world, and we don’t know what goes on, on the other side, and when you hear their stories, you’d actually be touched. It’s amazing to see a female producer, I’m impressed.


LYNDA: What would be your advice to other young aspirants who are aspiring to be producers, whether female or male?

CHICHI NWORAH: Knowledge, they need to study, they need to know the business, it’s not about ‘I’m a producer’, do you know what an original story is? One that can sell, the responsibilities of a producer includes picking your writer, choosing your story, because a lot of ideas will come to you, you should have the ability to say no, this can’t fly, this will fly.

INI EDO: This is timely, Is the time appropriate?

CHICHI NWORAH: You need to study, you need to go to school, doesn’t have to be the university, you can go to film school, there’s quite a few out there, Ini has a film academy, it’s called Ibom creative, yes we need to talk about it, because she’s doing great.

INI EDO: Ibom Creative Academy, it’s still in the works, we’re still working on it, but that’s in Akwa Ibom.

CHICHI NWORAH: Those are the kind of things we should be looking at as producers, she’s trying to ensure that Ini Edo continues, it’s not just about Ini Edo now, she’s going to pass Ini Edo down to other people, so as a producer, you also need to know actors that can deliver, if you bring your story and the actors you’re getting can’t deliver, then the story is a flop.

LYNDA: Thank you very much, you answered my questions perfectly, now my final question is to Ini, I really do like your movies and how you bring your characters to life, what would be your advise for people who want to go into acting, and what should people expect from Shanty Town?

INI EDO: Thank you. For people who want to go into acting, first of all I like to say let the passion be right, when the passion is right, every other thing makes it easier. Why do you want to be an actor? First of all, that’s the question you need to ask yourself, and if the answer is honorably enough for you, then you would be able to sustain yourself through the process of becoming an actor. It’s not easy being an actor, there’s so many things that you would experience, or that would happen to you on the course of trying to becoming an actor. So, if the passion is not right, you will fall off, let’s assume you want to do it for fame sake, you attain the fame, if the passion is not there, you cannot sustain that fame.

So I’d always advise, if you want to go for the right reasons, my advice will be consistency, work on yourself, watch a lot of movies, find a role model, in the sense of how the person acts, somebody that you can emulate, how to speak, how to carry yourself while acting, those are like few tips that I like to tell people. As far as being a female producers is concerned, my advice will be set your mind to it and go after it with all your heart, and basically get a lot of trainings, people think training is irrelevant, you need trainings on a lot of things that will make you a well grounded actor or producer.
As far as the females are concerned, I always say there’s nothing you can’t do once you set your mind to doing it, we just have to work perhaps ten times as hard as the men to be seen, be able to stand and find your way .

LYNDA: What should we expect from Shanty Town?

INI EDO: *laughs Shanty Town, expect creativity at it’s best, expect a different type of Nigerian film that you’ve never experienced before, expect to see film making from Nigeria like you’ve never seen before, expect to see a Hollywood film, just that Nigerians are the actors, *laughs.
Expect a lot of emotions, you’re going to be emotional at some point, at some point you’ll be so scared and frightened, at some point you’ll be angry. It’s an embodiment of different twists and there’s a lot of burst of emotions, you’ll be blown away by your favorite characters , everybody brought their A game, expect to see people in the wake that you’ve never seen them, everything is switched up in shanty town.

CHICHI NWORAH: Just don’t hate Chidi, *laughs

INI EDO: * laughs

LYNDA: I’ll try not to, thank you very much, have a lovely day.