The Director of Abuja International Film Festival, Mr. Fidelis Duker, has said that the organisers had received entries from 54 countries for the 2016 edition of the annual fiesta, which opened on Tuesday night.
Duker said at the opening of the festival at the Silverbird Galleria in Abuja that 767 films would be screened during the 13th edition of the fiesta, which would end on Oct. 7.
He described the entries as unprecedented since the inception of the festival in 2004.
This year’s festival has as its theme “Connecting Global Audiences.”
He said, “This has become so significant based on the theme of the festival this year.
“Our global partnership has allowed us see films from countries like Iran, Argentina, India, Germany, Cameroon and the U. S.
“The participating countries expressed satisfaction at the 2016 edition of the fiesta which also involved a documentary master class of America Film exhibition.
“This master-class will facilitate a dialogue between authors, producers, distributors, cinema owners, television companies, internet actors and financiers, with filmmakers of four American films screening at this year’s festival.”
Duker said the four-day event would feature seminars, panel discussions and awards for films and actors and other stakeholders, nominated for the AIFF awards.
Declaring the event open, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, thanked the organisers for sustaining the festival over the years.
He pledged Federal Government’s support, especially to the creative industry at large.
He said, “The organisers of this great festival kept at it for so many years, and we must commend them.
“The current government is putting diversification on its front burner, and the creative industry is a very significant area.
“The goal is to transform Nigeria’s creative industry into the creative economy.”
Actors, Directors and movie producers from within and outside Nigeria attended the event.
Goodwill messages were also delivered by members of the diplomatic corps.
The ambassadors of the U.S., Iran, China, France and other countries gave their goodwill messages.
The Abuja International Film Festival, which is organised by NAFIFO Ventures Ltd, started in 2004. It is a platform where films, stars, producers within and outside Nigeria are showcased.
The festival is affiliated to the Durban International Film Festival, Dahlegona International Film Festival, Georgia International Film Festival, Commonwealth International Film Festival and other renowned Film Festivals.punch