Wednesday, January 6, 2010

SO I FINALLY DECIDED ................

After careful consideration I have decided to establish a casting agency here in my homeland Ghana to scout for great diamond in a ruff type talent for our African movie industry (not just Ghanaian but any African who is interested in acting in English speaking movies)– by finding these talents and recommending them to some of my few producer/director friends in the industry.

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It’s something I am very passionate about, contemplated on for a long time and decided to take it serious after much encouragement by my friends. I am still thinking about a name for my agency, as well as the services that I will like to include and provide.

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My hope is that every year, I at least discover ONE UNKNOWN YET VERY GREAT FIRST TIME ACTRESS OR ACTOR – to whao the audience like Nse Ikpe Etim did with Reloaded, or like Derek Luke did with Antwone Fischer or Jennifer Hudson did with Dreamgirls. I will then market and promote them to my producer/directors friends – (and this is where I need to increase my network with producer/directors whose work I greatly admire if they read this blog they know who they are). If Emem Isong had not strongly encouraged Nse to try out for “Reloaded”, we would have missed out on such a great talent - and Lord knows we need more of such great actors and actress instead of using our handful of greats we just keep recycling. We love Nse and wish her the best in 2010 – the sky is the limit.

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Obviously I don’t have any professional casting experience thus until I garner a portfolio of a “Discovery of at least 5 Great Talents”, I have decided to provide this service for free. I am a strong believer of “Do what you love and the money will follow”. I will learn to cast from the pros that I admire in Hollywood who discovered and casted the greatest talent. I would love to discover these talents not just from auditioning workshops I intend to hold, but I would love to observe people in the oddest and informal settings to discover these talents – if I think they got potential I’ll encourage them to read a few scripts and make my decision from there. I know this is not going to be easy, but I will give my 100% to make sure I get good results – as a perfectionist, so Its “All or Nothing” for me – I want to do it RIGHT or not at all. With Gods direction I will be fine.

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Lord knows our Genevieve Nnaji cannot be duplicated (like Michael, Whitney, Mariah Carey, Celine and Beyonce can NEVER be duplicated – they are just one of a kind) but am sure they are some diamond in the ruffs out there yearning to be discovered and I so want to help them be discovered (i dont care what african county the are from - just be african to represent us all - ONE AFRICA). Enough of the recycling of our handful of great actors in our industry– Africa has just as much great talents like Hollywood does – I predict us growing to higher heights if we play our cards right. Africa Movie Industry “Love Em or Hate Em – I know I damn sure CAN NOT live without it. No Way. Mbanu.:lol:

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What I hope to find is very simple: ONE HAS TO BE ALL OF THE FOLLOWING;

  • BEAUTIFUL or HANDSOME (am not searching for models – I am seeking Real Talent in Acting) and possess the IT factor.
  • ELOQUENT AND ARTICULATE IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE (all Bri-American accent fakers IS A NO-NO– huge pet peeve! Just be yourselves – be proud of your native English accent. Please, its either u got it or you don’t – but please don’t force it. Force Force & Gra-Gra aspires will not be considered).
  • ABILITY TO BRING THE CHARACTER TO LIFE.
  • ABILITY TO SHOWCASE EMOTIONS ACROSS BOARD (sad, happy, shock, frustrated, etc) and make it believable – so believable for the audience to forget this is fiction – make it realistic.)
  • POTENTIAL OF BEING VERSATILE PLAYING ANY ROLE AND ANY CHARACTER (at ease) - YOU DONT HAVE TO BE PERFECT - THERE IS NO SUCH, BUT YOU HAVE TO HAVE GREAT POTENTIAL TO GROW AND IMPROVE. I KNOW ONE WHEN I SEE ONE.
  • “Take it Easy, Be Yourself and Let It Flow Naturally

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I already mentioned in this thread http://myafricanmoviereviews.blogspot.com/2009/12/my-personal-favourite-hollywood.html whom my favorite Hollywood actors are. Well here are my favorites for African Movie Actors/Actress – please bear in mind these are just for ENGLISH movies.

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I do watch Yoruba Movies too but not as much as EMG and thus don’t remember the names of the YMG actors/actresses top of my head – I do however give them the due respect and love many of their stars too. The following are my own personal list of EMG actors/tresses whose work I truly like. If there are others I did not list, that’s nothing personal, I simply listed whom I like and enjoy watching (Bolded blues are my Ghanaian actors).

-GENEVIEVE NNAJI; AKORFA ASIEDU, FUNKE AKINDELE; RITA DOMINIC; KATE HENSHAW, NSE IKPE ETIM; LIZ BENSON; CHINNY AHANEKU, UCHE OSUTOLE ETC (a few other TV drama/sitcoms actors whose names I don’t remember top of my head – matter of fact I have always thought actors/actresses who play in TV dramas are way better than the ones in our movies, at least I know that for a fact for Ghana movies – sometimes when u watch our TV dramas like “Home Sweet Home”, Things you Do for Love, Taxi Driver etc, they showcase some of the best actors and actresses Ghana has – Shirley Frimpong Manso is good at casting and choosing to work with many of these type actors in her movies ("Life and Living it" had at least 3-4 actors I recognized from our past TV dramas) – Majid (whom she casted in “A Sting In A Tale” was in past Ghana TV drama “Things You do for Love” and currently in TV drama called “Home Sweet Home”). Nigerian TV Drama called “Heritage” which I watched back in the day with Ramsey Nouah and Nse had a lot of other good actors/actresses. .

OMOTOLA JALADE EKEINDE, STELLA DAMASUS, BIMBO AKINTOLA, STEPHANIE OKEREKE, INI EDO, MERCY JOHNSON (for the love of God woman - u are great actress - try and be selective sometime and stop saying yes to every script - You agreed to too many crap script this 2009)

-MAJID MICHEL; ADJETEY ANANG, NANA KWAME OSEI SARPONG (AND ALL THE ACTORS SHIRLEY FRIMPONG MANSO USUALLY USES IN HER MOVIES MAJID, ADJETEY, NANA KWAME ETC.); RAMSEY NOUAH; JIM IYKE; DESMOND ELLIOT;

-RICHARD MOFE DAMIJO; ZACH ORJI; SAM DEDE, CHARLES OKAFOR; the actor who plays a pastor in movie “Saving Sarah”-forgot his name.

-KOFI ADJOLOLOR, RAMA BREW, JOKE SILVA, OLU JACOBS, JUSTIS ESIRI, PETE ENEH, PETE EDOCHIE, NKEM OWOH, SAM LOCO, PATIENCE OZORKWOR, CHIWETALU AGU, GERALDINE EKEOCHA, NGOZI EZEONU, EBELE OKARO.

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-OTHER ACTORS / TRESS I DID NOT INCLUDE ABOVE YET I STILL THINK HAVE GREAT POTENTIAL TO IMPROVE DEPENDING ON QUALITY SCRIPT, PRODUCER & DIRECTORS THEY WORK WITH TO CHALLENGE THEIR SKILL are as follows:

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- LYDIA FORSON, NAA ASHORKOR, NADIA BUARI, YVONNE OKORO,?,URU EKE, OMONI OBOLI, UCHE JUMBO, UFUOMA EJENOBOR, MUNA OBIEKWE, KALU IKEAGWU, YEMI BLAQ YUL EDOCHIE, KALU IKEAGWU, JOHN DUMELO, TONTOH DIKEH (Tontoh Dikeh lately her acting is becoming predictable – just like Chika Ike’s, thus I am slowly losing interest. Tontoh she needs to tone it down a notch and relax with all the gra-gra – she has great potential –I won’t critique her of any particular movie she did in 2009, but I’d just like her to sit down watch all her movies and critique herself and ask herself what is she needs to improve

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I wish them well this 2010 and hopefully they get lead roles in just one excellent and memorable breakthrough movie that will make them shine like Genevieve did with “Sharon Stone 1-2-3”, Ini Edo did with “World Apart”, and Rita Dominic did with “All my Life” and Mercy Johnson did with “The Maid”.

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Another area I have a passion for is casting of young child actors (seems like the industry is ignoring them or maybe their parents just don’t want them in it). These child actors are the ones going to grow to be great talents, just like Hollywood does have.

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Read this thread:

http://myafricanmoviereviews.blogspot.com/2009/05/nollywood-child-actors-vs-hollywood.html.

where I talked about “African child actors vs. Hollywood child Actors”. I’d love to discover new child actors with natural born talents and not just rehearsed lines like we have always gotten. We may not get a Dakota Fanning, Tatum Oneal, Hayley Mills or Drew Barrymore childlike actors but am sure they are some few undiscovered ones out there

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Lets support our African movie industry – those who are doing such great work at it (those giving us the audience great quality work even if its once, twice or thrice a year) – our great producers, directors, actors, actresses etc and let’s not forget the excellent crews and all the people who believe in these producers to support them financially – we encourage more financial institutions to support the industry. As a ghanaian I Say by end of 2009 - Shirley Frimpong Manso is the only one lady holding up Ghana right now - no one in Ghana is giving as much a great quality script and production like she is and i wish her all the best (I will always support her)- I pray she gets all the financial support she needs. - The Financial Institutions need to support her - if she gets shine - we all shine as a country. I wish our friends Emem, Vivian, Tchidi, Desmond etc who are also doing very well in Naija. - forever have my support too. The West is doing Big Thangs!.

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Our support as part of an audience is to purchase these GREAT QUALITY MOVIES (forget the rubbish ones whose names we will call out on this blog) for ourselves, our friends and families and not to watch them online for free or buy them pirated. (emphasis on the bold red underline)

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Ps: Darn now I wish I had invested in some extra classes on "casting" at USC Annenberg when I had a chance. May God Help me now with this my new endeavor :lol:.

7 comments:

TayneMent said...

I think it's a great idea!. You don't need the classes to know who to cast, you have enough passion and knowledge in african movies to know what to expect and as you go along you will become a pro at it. like i have said before I just love your passion. feel free to holla if you need any help at all and good luck!

Myne Whitman said...

All the best to you. I agree that there is a lot of recycling going on. So where are you based and how will the casting tale place?

Miz B said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miz B said...

Miss TILII.. you dont know how this particular write-up warms my heart! You go girl! Im sure you'll do just fine. Forget the formal 'training'.The important thg you have is PASSION and an eye/a gut feeling for picking out a winner. you go girl! Just learn to be street smart, have your funding and make the right contacts. Will mail you later.

Tell It Like It is said...

I will be based home in Labone/Accra - Ghana. I will start from Ghana, then to Nigeria and travel to other african countries to seek talent.

I have my name, but i want to register it first before i blurt it out. Have to lock in the name.

Nollywood Forever said...

Congratulations chica! What an exicting endeavour...

Naija Passion said...

Miss Tilii:

I have been following your blog for a while now and I must say that you have really lived up to your name! I am an Avid Naija/Ghanaian movie watcher and the reviews you've written are really on point....

I just wanted to say that I am really happy to hear of your project (starting your casting company) and wish you the very best. I really believe you have what it takes to do this and that you will bring in much needed professionalism to the industry...

All the best...

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