Star film Soul Diaspora premieres in Lagos

May 17, 2012 | Filed Under Uncategorized | Comments Off on Star film Soul Diaspora premieres in Lagos


The African Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) winning film Soul Diaspora will premiere at the Ozone Cinemas, Yaba, Lagos, on January 28.The film, written and directed by Odera Ozoka, a Nigerian based in Los Angeles, was adjudged best film from the Diaspora at the 2010 AMAAs.

After touring several film festivals and winning awards worldwide, Soul Diaspora will now be seen by a larger Nigerian audience during its red carpet opening on Saturday.After much acclaim in the West where its “dark, gritty” story has been hailed for its depiction of the harsh realities of immigrant life, Ozoka looks forward to see the reaction of his Nigerian audience.

“People think that when you go overseas life becomes easy but it’s not true,” Ozoka told our reporter at the Ozone Cinemas.

In the film, the lead character a Nigerian immigrant named Saidu goes to America, a country where he thinks things will be better and easier but then he finds out it’s not really different. The official film statement says that Saidu “is forced to overcome sleepless nights of his tormented past in Africa. The audience finds him alone in this modern world, often hearing voices in his head, sometimes not even his, as the film interweaves colour and black and white to illustrate this protagonist’s conflicted behaviour and tortured mental state.”

“No matter where you go to search for a better life, if you’re not satisfied with who you are, nothing changes. You’re going to go through the challenges of loneliness, sadness and the demons follow you to any part of the world,” said Ozoka who wants the audience to see something that they have not seen before, different from the kind of Nollywood film much of the Lagos audience is used to.

“I’m not saying that Nigerians shouldn’t bother [to go to America or Europe], I’m just saying that be realistic. America is a great place to live but the idea that if you go there all your problems will be solved is a total myth,” he said.

It is a thought echoed by one of the film’s producers French woman Clotilde Delavennat who has been living in the United States for four years.“Sometimes your struggles start [in America] because you realise that you’re nothing in their eyes. Unfortunately you have to start from the bottom and the bottom is so low that you never feel comfortable and you never live the kind of life you want to have.The  film explores the loneliness faced by immigrants as they try to fit into a society that is different from theirs as well as to stay on the right side of the law.

“There are lots of moments when you’re in a different country, no matter how much you love the place, you know that you’re not home yet,” said Delavennat.

Among the stars that are expected on the red carpet on Saturday is Sierra Leonean actor Sadiq Abu who played the role of Saidu in the film. Abu was nominated in the best actor category of the 2010 AMAAs.

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Update: Hollywood Actor Sadiq Abu To Sign Contract

May 17, 2012 | Filed Under Uncategorized | Comments Off on Update: Hollywood Actor Sadiq Abu To Sign Contract 


Action on film festival”Best Villain”


After the successful inclusion of Hollywood ace cinematographer and two-time award winner for best cinematography, John Demps, the producers of “The Lost Number” went further to carefully cast UK’s sweetheart and rising star, actress Lisa Marrs in the role of Kathleen Jones (lead).

As our open casting call draws to an end, the producers are now at the verge of signing contract with Hollywood’s “new-man” and award winner for Best Villain, actor Sadiq Abu.

This of course is happening side by side on going negotiation with one of Nigeria’s foremost actors with international film credits.

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Interview with Sadiq Abu

May 17, 2012 | Filed Under Uncategorized | Comments Off on Interview with Sadiq Abu


Sadiq Abu was born and raised in the Kono District of Sierra Leone. At an early age because of the uncertainty in his country of birth, he pursued a life long journey to every Sub Saharan African country. He spent some years in East Africa before finally settling down in South Africa where he continued to pursue his career as an actor. While in SA he studied Market Theatre. During his days of travelling, theatre cum films became a means of survival for him. Presently residing in Los Angeles, USA, Sadiq works as a full time actor. Having come from a humble Muslim family, Sadiq Abu who is in his early 30s has seen life from every angle. He was nominated for three categories in the just concluded African Movie Academy Awards held in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, namely Achievement in Sound, Best Film in the Diaspora and the Best Actor in a Leading Role, but won the Best Film in the Diaspora (Soul Diaspora).This strikingly good looking dude in this interview with Geraldine Okolie, savours his recent award. How do you feel wining the award?

I feel really great, humble, honoured and blessed to be recognized by Nigerians working as an actor. I really appreciate that the AMAA committee was able to put something like this together that is for African, by Africans and for all Africa.

We won three nominations – Achievement in Sound, Best Actor in a Leading Role and Best Film in the Diaspora but I won the Best Film in the Diaspora.

Who are the ‘we’ you are referring to?

I said we because I am part of the film and the director is a Nigerian by name Odera Ozoka, who is from Anambra State. I and he are a team. I would have loved to win the best actor if I had not won this one. Ramsey Noah, who won the best actor, is a talented guy. I feel honoured to be in company of these great actors.

What’s AMAA all about to your understanding?

It is like an African story telling, promoting of African arts and it was created by a lady called Peace Anyiam Osigwe and few of her colleagues. So it is more of celebrating African cinema, not only that but it also enables Africa to tell its own stories by its own people through its own perspectives.

So it is basically African stories being told by Africans because for a long time African stories have been told by someone else. It is about time we told our own stories and Peace has been able to achieve that. AMAA is not only about cinema and films, it is also about nurturing, educating, creating the next generation of African film makers.

How would you rate the Nigeria film industry?

It is in a very good place with a lot of potentials but it still needs a lot of growing up. However, starting from this year, it’s going to be even better because all of these other actors nominated are all top world class filmmakers.

It is no longer like when you see a film in Nigeria, the acting and the production value is bad. To me, all of that is a thing of the past. At least, Nigerians and indeed Africans as a whole are beginning to understand that film making is not a one man effort but a collective effort. Some are telling the stories right and for one to tell the stories right, there is need to take time to do it by getting a good script and a good story, a better production value, good directors, actors  as well as  producers.

So I think that the Nigerian movie industry is definitely going places and I predict that Africa as a whole is going places when it comes to cinema in the next few years.

Apart from acting, what else do you do?

I act, that’s what I love doing all my life because it’s my heart. If am not acting, I have a theatre company that I help cofound with a group of pan African actors who are in western world. It is not only me; there are other people who are like me from all over Africa.

We also created a secret drum company in Los Angeles, which is doing very well, and we are creating everything from a concept to a reality. We are presently in the process of developing a TV show called Maison Blanche. It is about creating and moving forward with whatever artistic integrity that we can put in helping African cinema.

What do you do at your leisure time?

I read a lot of literature books, soccer, keeping fit, watch movies where I also learn from other actors and I have featured in some films like The Pretty Boys ProjectTrafficker and the most prominent and very close to my heart isSoul Diaspora. It really brought me into limelight and showcased my work.

It has also won the favourite award at the Pan African Film Festival. It was also an official selection at the International Film Festival and it has also won the best film in the Diaspora at AMAA. I really cannot remember all the films I have featured in but I have done some TV shows in America.

Can you say that the award has motivated you to continue in your acting career?

Oh yes, very much! If there is anything it has done for me, it has pushed me to the next level and it has given me the opportunity to get to where I had always wanted. I can’t wait to work with more generous and talented Nigerian actors and directors because to me, it is about sharing and bringing myself as an actor, get to see a very good production value, then I will be willing to work with a lot of actors out there that are wiling to put the story out.

What role does story telling play in your career?

Yes, I love story telling, I grew up mostly without electricity in Sierra Leone telling stories around the fire. So that is why story telling is part of me but I believe it has a kind of insignificant value to us as Africans, especially in the medium of cinema.

As Africans, we need to come together as one big great continent and I truly believe that story telling in cinemas as a whole is what will enable Africans to achieve what we want to achieve.

Do you think Nigeria is a good place for investors and tourists to come in?

What we hear about Nigeria in the western world is all about negative stories but when you come to Nigeria you will see beautiful things in positive ways. What I have experienced here is incomparable; Lagos alone is a very vibrant city and very much alive and I just came back from Abuja. That, itself, is so beautiful and I begin to wonder why so much negatives have been said about this country.

Why are all these good things not being mentioned in the western world? So for me, that negativity is out of the way and I’m just looking forward to the positive attitudes and positive changes for the future of Africans.

What would you say about Nollywood?

It is doing great, it should continue in that path of greatness. My advice to actors and actresses is that they should remain persistent in whatever thing they are doing. You don’t just wake up one morning and start acting. You know acting needs skill and it is like any other industry or profession like engineering, law and so on. It is a knowledge that you can attain, it’s a career. So they should open their heart and learn as much as they can, read broadly,research on the internet, make yourself better as an actor everyday. If you want to be the best, you have to be very hard working and believe in yourself as an actor.

Do you think that Nigerian movie industry needs the backing of the government?

I really think that the film industry needs a lot of support from government as well as individuals. Huge investmentis what the industry needs from these group because film industry is an extremely profitable business, if the structure is right.

So for the structure to be right, these group and cooperate bodies have to come in and develop this industry that is just at its birth.

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The lives of African immigrants explored in ‘Soul Diaspora’

May 17, 2012 | Filed Under Uncategorized | Comments Off on The lives of African immigrants explored in ‘Soul Diaspora’ 

 “Soul Diaspora,” a new feature film by Nigerian filmmaker Odera Ozoka, recently won the Audience Favorite Narrative Feature Award at the annual Pan African Film Festival in Los Angeles, California.

The film centers on the life of Saidu, a Fulani/Nigerian immigrant living in Los Angeles. His life of solitude as an African immigrant is interwoven with memories of trauma in Nigeria.

Ozoka, who wrote, directed and produced the film, succeeds in making the character’s loneliness palpable on screen.

As the film progresses, a variety of characters intersect with Saidu’s life, each affected by their own memories and loneliness. Some come to play important roles in his life, such as the Afghan father and son, owners of a car repair shop, and an exotic dancer, Latisha, with whom Saidu finds the possibility of love. Latisha has her own wounds and through their relationship he begins to deal with some of the pain associated with his family in Nigeria.

His relationship with the repair shop owner, Ziman, and his son, Reza, evolves into a strange but strong friendship strengthened by his isolation in Los Angeles and their shared immigrant experiences.

Their lives are changed by the September 11 attacks that trigger feelings of patriotism, anger and fear, forcing Saidu to make some life-changing decisions.

Odera Ozoka shot the film over the course of 10 days in the Los Angeles area and blends powerful, sometimes uncomfortable images to tell a story that is as far removed from Hollywood as it is from Nollywood.

Saidu is played by Fulani actor Sadiq Abu, who manages to reflect the complexities of this conflicted and at times humorous man.

Ozoka has several other projects lined up. He is currently working on a pilot for a television show called Maison Blanch, a
comedy about an African-immigrant couple living in the US who decide to start a new business.

He is also working on two feature film projects. One is a drama set in Houston, Texas, and the other a film set in Nigeria’s Niger-Delta.

Ozoka is excited about shooting a film in Nigeria. The film will focus on the impact of violence in the region and the planned action drama will be a mix between Blood Diamond and Munich.

He also works on projects with Sacred Drum Company, a coalition of pan-African artists that produce several projects a year, including films and plays.

All Africa

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Sadiq abu in Nigeria

April 30, 2012 | Filed Under Uncategorized | Comments Off on Sadiq abu in Nigeria 

Working on a movie in ………The Lost Number is an action drama produced by Promise Dike and Kester Nsirim. It was written and directed by Kester Nsirim. It stars Sam Dede,Sadiq Abu, and Lisa Holsappel-Marrs. It tells the story of Kathleen, an English woman who goes down south to Ngara Town after going renegade on the Foray. Seeking redemption, Kathleen saves Ngara Town and becomes her new hero. But when Diwani (point man of the Foray) comes to Ngara to retrieve from Kathleen what belongs to the Foray, Kathleen must go against the odds to save Ngara from Diwani and a Foray striking for the very soul of Ngara Town. The Lost Number is scheduled to be premiered in the summer.

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The One To Watch.

March 17, 2010 | Filed Under Uncategorized | 5 Comments 

Guinean/Sierra leaonean/American actor Sadiq Abu, is a new face on the rise when it comes to his fame, and watch out people this actor is no joke. Like  stars before him Robert De Niro in “Taxi Driver”, or Al Pacino in “Dog Day Afternoon”,  Sadiq abu has a characteristic very few actor out there have…he is simply magnetic and powerful to watch. you simply cant take your eyes off him when he is on the screen,  And THAT my friends will take him far.

Nominated for the Lead Actor  category for the African Movie Academy Awards ( AMAA ) 2010, for his outstanding performance in the Award winning Art House film “Soul Diaspora”  Mr. Abu plays with such subtle brilliance  his character ‘Saidu’, a Nigerian hiding in the under belly of Los- Angele’s, trying desperately to find his soul.

Come April 10th in Bayelsa,   He would be going head first against some of Africa’s heavy weights such as   Majid Michel and Ramsey Noah, but something tells me this talented actor is about to blossom.

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