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Outrage as Bauchi governor stars in Nollywood movie

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Jaafar Jaafar is a graduate of Mass Communication from Bayero University, Kano. He was a reporter at Daily Trust, an assistant editor at Premium Times and now the editor-in-chief of Daily Nigerian.
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The Bauchi State governor, Mohammed Abubakar, has caused social media storm, following his decision to feature in a Nollywood movie “Up North”.

DAILY NIGERIAN reports that the governor’s decision sparked social media censure, with most commenters saying it was against the culture of the people and unbecoming of a governor.

The movie star-studded cast includes Kanayo O. Kanayo, Banky W, TBoss, Michelle Dede, Rahama Sadau, Saeed Mohammed, and Akin Lewis.

One of the executive producers of the film and founder of Anakles Films, Editi Effiong, said Mr Abubakar would not only be starring in Tope Oshin’s Up North but committed to making the project a success.

Mr Effiong also revealed that the governor offered his convoy when the crew had difficulties finding cars for a convoy for a scene, offered Yankari Game Reserves as the crew could not get a hotel, and got the crew permission to shoot at the Emir’s Palace.

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The emir of Bauchi, Rilwanu Adamu, will also appear in the movie, apparently at the behest of the governor.

“Up North is a story of friendship, love, and family politics. It focuses on a rebellious heir (Banky W) whose NYSC year does not go according to plan,” he said.

Mr Effiong noted that the governor’s reason for appearing and supporting the film was to diversify the state’s economy and create employment opportunities for the people.

“His (Gov. Abubakar’s) explanation makes sense, shooting a movie in Bauchi is more like marketing the state to Nigerians who do not know about the many attractions of the state. Also, Nollywood can help with the diversification the Nigerian economy needs and for her to really blossom, she needs the Nigerian Government’s support,” Mr Effiong added.

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Special Assistant to the governor on Communication, Shamsuddeen Lukman, said the governor decided to make the appearance as the theme of the movie reflects the key policies of his administration.

“Bauchi State governor leads in the areas of education, especially girl-child education.

“Bauchi State has a lot breathtaking tourism sites such as Yankari Games Reserve, Sumu Park, Mbula Rock, among others.

“So shooting the film in Bauchi will promote the tourism sites to the world in line with the governor’s tourism promotion initiatives,” he added.

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Five things to know about the film

  1. Production: Up North is a joint effort of Inkblot Productions and Anakle Films, a subsidiary of Anakle Digital. Anakle Films is a new player in the industry while Inkblot Productions has produced several blockbusters including the box office record-shattering Wedding Party 1 and 2.
  2. Directing: Up North is directed by Tope Oshin, who has already released one movie this year – New Money and has another one coming up – We Don’t Live Here Anymore. Her upcoming project is an adult queer story. Exciting times in Nollywood!
  3. Release Date: there is no specific date but it is coming out in cinemas nationwide in December and we can expect an elaborate premiere that is most likely going to have governors and an emir in attendance.
  4. Shoot Location: Up North is being shot on locations in Lagos and Bauchi, but from the title only, you can tell most part of the movie will be shot up north.
  5. Up North is the first Nollywood movie that will star a sitting governor and an emir. This is a big one for Nollywood.
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