Nollywood actress, Genevieve Nnaji, has said that it is an honour for her directorial debut movie ‘Lionheart’ to be selected to represent Nigeria at the International Feature Film category of the 2020 Oscars.
The Nigerian Oscars Selection Committee (NOSC) announced the selection of the movie on Wednesday following a statutory vetting and subsequent voting of entries received from Nigerian filmmakers at home and in the Diaspora.
Since the inauguration of the NOSC in 2014, this is the first time Nigeria is advancing a film to the Oscar, as previous entries received by the committee did not meet basic criteria.
The NOSC said it picked ‘Lionheart’ for its considerable shots at the rules.
Genevieve, however, in a post on Instagram on Thursday on behalf of the Lionheart crew, thanked all for the recognition, love and support.
She said: “The Nigerian Oscar Selection Committee has chosen @lionheartthemovie to represent Nigeria for the 2020 Academy Award for Best International Film! This is the first entry ever for Nigeria. It’s an honour to be a part of such a pivotal moment in the history of Nigerian cinema.
“A moment we know will be replicated as our stories continue to resonate with audiences around the world. On behalf of the entire LIONHEART team and TEN Productions, we are grateful for this recognition and proud to carry the torch. Thank you all for the love and support thus far.”
Produced by Chinny Onwugbenu, Chichi Nwoko, Genevieve Nnaji, and directed by Genevieve Nnaji, ‘Lionheart’ premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and was acquired on September 7, 2018, as first Netflix original film produced in Nigeria.
The film stars Pete Edochie, Genevieve Nnaji, Nkem Owoh, Onyeka Onwenu, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Chika Okpala, Kalu Ikeagwu, Sanni Mu’azu, Yakubu Mohammed, Ngozi Ezeonu, Peter Okoye (P-Square) and Chibuzor Azubuike (Phyno).