Thursday, April 24, 2014

Is "Half of a Yellow Sun" A British Film, Nigerian Film or British Nigerian Film?

I know that many people in Nigeria are hailing Biyi Bandele's first feature "Half of a Yellow Sun" as the best thing to happen to Nollywood since "Living in Bondage" and the Nigerian executive producers are celebrating it as the most expensive Nigerian film that cost them US$10 million. But in the US and Europe, it is reviewed as a British funded British film, because to them it is a British film by a British director Biyi Bandele, lead actors Chiwetel Ejiofor and Thandie Newton are also British.
‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ explores UK colonial legacy in Nigeria

While ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ has been praised as one of just a handful of British films that engage with Britain’s post-imperial legacy in Nigeria, critics say it doesn’t do the book justice describing it as "a diverting but surface-level saga".

Photo: Joseph Mawle, director Biyi Bandele, Thandie Newton and Chiwetel Ejiofor on the red carpet. Photo Credit: Daily Mail of UK.
Half of a Yellow Sun, backed by the BFI Film Fund, is in cinemas from 18 April 2014. 
Chiwetel Ejiofor: 'I find racial concepts fascinating'
He spent a large chunk of last year banishing family demons in Nigeria, where he filmed the British-financed Half of a Yellow Sun, based on Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's brilliant book about the Biafran war. The conflict prompted his parents to flee the country, emigrating to London, where they had Chiwetel, along with his elder brother and two younger sisters. The fighting also uprooted his grandfather, a story Ejiofor captured on tape a few years ago.

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