Nigeria: Can ‘Anti-Daba’ Film Change Kannywood’s Narratives?

For decades, Kannywood has been criticised for its inability to produce films that address social issues affecting the general public. Some of the critics of the industry are of the view that due to its long affiliation with the Indian film making industry ‘Bollywood’, Kannywood is seen as an extension of Bollywood in terms of producing mainly ‘Love’ themed films.

Also, the inclusion of love songs in films has generated serious debate on whether Kannywood should discard the use of songs in films and create an identity for itself or continue borrowing from the Indians irrespective of the existing socio-cultural differences.

According to Hausa film analyst Malam Muhammad Sani Token, despite several attempt by individuals and corporate entities that have strong ties and synergy with the industry to ensure a shift in direction, Kannywood is said to have remained adamant to those attempted changes.

According to him, unplanned and with time, Kannywood had gone through a natural change phenomenon, as films without songs began to gain ground.

He explained that with little or no efforts; the Hausa film industry naturally began to record a shift in its storylines as well as content.

“Scripts began deviating from the usual love storyline to issue oriented stories. It started with comedies instead of the usual love stories. Moreover, the satellite TV stations were very instrumental in the shift. It was on record that the industry gradually dropped the song aspect which producers initially believed that no film will make any meaningful business impact without a song. “The irony here is that after a shift from love stories, transition to comedies and other genres, it was unfortunate that the industry has moved to stories on thugs,” he revealed.

Similarly, a veteran film producer Malam Ahmed Muhammad Giwa is of the view that Kannywood had its litmus test when it produced the film ‘Zakaran Gwajin Dafi’. According to him, it was a film produced to test the possibilities of producing a non-love story and song free film. He added that although the film succeeded, practitioners didn’t officially adopt the model and as such continued with production the way the markets dictate.

However, in recent times, there has been a move by an individual to produce a film that will address the issues of thugs, cyber crime, kidnapping, among other issues. Auwal Bala is a private security expert who has been behind several discussion on security issues across the nation. As an expert, he had proffered solutions to many of the discussed issues.

According to him, the idea of producing a film that will completely change the narrative in Kannywood was conceived after a thorough research was conducted on Nigerian security challenges. He revealed that the research was sponsored by late Othman Tofa when he was serving as the chairman of Kano Concern Citizens Initiatives (KCCI), adding that after a successful conduct of the research, a comprehensive report was made and documented as a blueprint meant to be presented to government officials for action.

“Personally late Othman Bashir Tofa gathered different security professionals and sponsored research on security causes, management and prevention. We went round the nation and conducted the research. We compiled a robust report, but unfortunately Othman Tofa died before we could sit with him to present the report. It is apparent that as a good citizen and a nationalist, late Tofa has done his part, and that is why I took it upon myself to sponsor a film that will address the social issue highlighted in the research,” said Auwal.

He further explained that the film ‘Anti-Daba’ has been produced to address the issue of insecurity among other social vices and that the film had enjoyed the best crew and state-of-the-art equipment.

Sources close to the producer of the film revealed that over 600 persons participated in the film audition held in Kano, adding that the film which was shot in various locations within and outside the state was going to be in series.

Many film analysts who have visited the film scenes expressed their confidence that the film when released will definitely change the narratives in Kannywood.

The first episode of the film would soon be released. Prominent faces in the film include Tijjani Faraga, Shu’aibu Lilisco among few others, while a host of the cast are new faces.

The question remains, will this film change Kannywood’s narratives on storylines? Only time will answer this question.

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