Actor | Director | Producer | Filmmaker | Film Entrepreneur
My journey so far as a filmmaker and a film entrepreneur has been an exciting one. For someone who lived his entire life in a village for almost 20 years, some of these creative privileges seem to elude us. But some way, I still found my way here and be in the business of creating more opportunities and values for you filmmakers all over the world. I started off my career as an actor while still studying film directing and producing at the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana. The “Village Boy” graduated as a first-class student with higher hopes of being in the film industry after serving a year in academics as a teaching assistant. With a dream to continue acting for the next 5 years before venturing into productions, lack of opportunities made me produce my first short film right after school. Continued hunger for opportunities took me to Nollywood through a film reality TV show dubbed Script2Screen Africa which took place in 2018 in Lagos, Nigeria by representing Ghana and winning the competition with my team as the leader.
All of these and more made me realize that I needed to be more in the film industry than just being an actor. So, I produced by 2nd short film titled AKOM, my directorial debut and had the opportunity for the film to screen at several international film festivals. These and more and also being inspired after attending FESPACO which is the biggest film festival in Africa in Burkina made me establish Accra Indie Filmfest (AiF) as the converging point for young filmmakers who are into the production of short films and to create more value that will give them a smooth sail in the film industry whiles I personally still remain an actor. Since the maiden edition of the festival in 2019, we have received over 5000 short films from a total of over 160 countries and screened over 140 short films representing about 45 countries. We have also held about 8 different workshops and 8 industry conversations and have celebrated filmmakers with 27 awards over the past three editions. We have also reached tens of thousands of people from all around the world through live and innovative virtual platforms.
What were the biggest initial hurdles and how did you overcome them?
With regards to the festival, it has always been funding pretty much a global challenge and that’s the reason why we do not even want to dwell on that and just keep creating what we will be able to. However, in our sophomore edition in 2020 was when the global pandemic, covid 19 showed up. This led most of the world’s biggest film festivals to even shutting down. It was going to be a bigger blow if we also shut down because the maiden edition gathered a lot of expectation. We then deemed it fit to graduate the festival online with specific events curated to make the festival as exciting as it being an in-person festival and this approach actually turned out to be our biggest strategy in selling out the festival to the rest of the world.
What books are you currently reading?
I am currently reading “Jewish Wisdom For Business Success” by Rabbi Levi Brackman and Sam Jaffe.
What advice would you give to an upcoming youth or talents locally and internationally?
My advice will be for them to be exploratory and daring enough. There is so much to experience in our field of interest and every young talent should be daring enough to go beyond the regular. Also we should always dream beyond our immediate environment since there is a possibility of being an impact for the rest of the world.
Social Media Handles:
Instagram: @iam_evaneghan @accraindiefilmfest