Gone are those days when Nigerians Movies used to have affirmative impact on our culture. Local movies are conferred with the prominence of teaching culture, propagating the rudiments therein and promoting cultural heritage.
During the era of the late Hubert Ogunde of blessed memory, it was well-known that culture is predominantly preached and the hidden is revealed to the novice about what Yoruba culture stands for. Also, the late theatre ICON used his movie power as a tool to castigate the wrong deed that was decaying the moral standard of the people in the western region.
Also, in the early 70s and 80s, Yoruba movies were prominent on local television and watched by large populace across the nation. These movies caught the heart of fans as it made them stayed glued to their television sets without any distractions as a result of their unique way of entertaining people with true passion and demonstration of raw talent.
At the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (Ogun Chapter) Annual Conference/Awards Ceremony held recently in Abeokuta, the Towuladel of Akinale Owu Kingdom Oba Femi Ogunleye expressed his concern at the rate at which Nigerians has sold their culture for foreign cultures.
“In every gathering we find ourselves we should not be afraid of feeel embarrased to speak our mother languages. It shows you were well cultured when you speak your language and promote the culture of your country”, he added.
Now where is the ethics of the Yoruba movie? What does the movie industry in Yoruba land stands to propagate as far as our culture is concerned? How is the industry educating our upcoming youths and those in the Diasporas? What is really the stumbling stone that is actually responsible for the mess we are experiencing in the industry today? These are the questions that are being tabled before Yoruba Movie Editors, Story Writers and Producers…
Segun Ogungbe (a Yoruba Actor, Story Writer and Movie director) shared his views on the place of Yoruba film industry in propagating the Yoruba culture..
“Permit me to say this, customarily, the Yoruba movie suppose to be a medium of educating and entertaining people about our culture but unfortunately what we are witnessing today differs from the normal. Absolutely, there’s no film these days that are really promoting our culture.”
“And to some extent , the blames is not ours. Sometimes when we produce films that focus on the Yoruba culture, it ends up not selling in the market because our audience too are to be considered as well. Most of them see cultural films as an outdated films and in this case, who will want to spend money to produce a film that will lead to the state of insolvency? That is not all, you see my greatest pain about the Yoruba movie is that we cherish the foreign culture over our own culture. Unfortunately we end up producing Junks films, even with the preferred culture. Instead of coming back home to do the best in what we know and understand, we continue to molest ourselves in the name of civilization”.
“However, our viewers sometimes determine what we produce. How many of them are really after the cultural issue? All they want to see is the star actors and actresses and also the beautiful locations with the attire they would like to mimic. And because no one is ready to loss at the end of a production, the culture is left behind.”
” To bring things back to a better standard the viewers should encourage the works of the few of us that are still passionate about the promotion of our tradition and culture. Also the producers and actors should know that our movies travel far than we do. So many Nigerians in the Diaspora use Yoruba film to teach their children what they need to know about their fatherland. If we fail to know about this, definitely we want the Yoruba culture to become History.” Ogungbe reiterated.