Ghanaian-Romanian musician and film producer Emmanuel Owusu-Bonsu aka Wanlov the Kubolor is considering making a third instalment to his Ghanaian Pidgin-English musical ‘Coz Ov Moni’.
Co-producers Mensah Ansah and Kubolor star in the films and are real-life friends. They started on their creative path during their school days when they used to run away from class to rap together. The pair wanted to create a concert album where everything takes place in one day in the life of two friends in Accra, Kubolor told MisBeee during a meeting hosted by Blogging Ghana. While writing, the songs turned into movie scenes, spawning what Kubolor calls the first Ghanaian English-Pidgin musicals in the world.
A third film is a possibility, although Kubolor has ruled out self-funding the production. “We used our own money to make both films and we are thinking we need to pre-finance the third one – we can’t use our money again,” he said during the BloggingGhana meeting hosted in Osu, Accra. BloggingGhana is a Ghana-based organisation for bloggers and social media enthusiasts.
Kubolor is all too aware of how challenging it is for Ghanaian filmmakers to source the required investment to make films. ‘Coz Ov Moni I and Coz ov Moni II (FOKN Revenge) have been one of only a number of films from Ghana to be showcased at film festivals across the globe, including at the UK’s annual Film Africa festival. At this year’s event (28 October – 6 November) only three films from over 50 films came from Ghana.
These films were ‘Nakom’, ‘Children of the Mountain’ and ‘A United Kingdom’. Last year only one Ghanaian film featured: ‘The Cursed Ones’ and since the Film Africa festival started five years ago, the highest number of Ghanaian films was five in 2012. ‘Coz ov Moni I’ was one of those films.
“To make films that can make it to such festivals you need to have public funding, commercial funding, or it has to be from your own private pocket money,” said Kubolor. “We don’t have the funds for those kinds of experimental acts. So Shirley Frimpong Manso’s films would not be able to make it because it is very commercial, the story lines have been seen before. And the local films are of too poor a quality to make it there.”
No dates have been set for the third film’s release. But if a fresh instalment comes off, Kubolor is keen to revisit two popular mythical cultural characters that featured in the second film.
Dracula and Ananse
“We did the first one in Ghana – Accra,” said Kubolor. “In the second, we expanded the story and shot two scenes in Romania, Transylvania because we wanted to put together two mythological characters – Dracula and Kwaku Ananse – West Africa’s folkloric Spiderman. We made these two characters meet in a dream sequence and I think we will bring them back in the third one,” he said.
Kubolor is now toying between shooting the film in Lagos in Nigeria and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil – two cities he describes as ‘dangerous’. But which is more dangerous to a ‘newcomer’ such as the characters in his film, he muses? …..I guess we will just have to wait and see….
Have you watched ‘Coz ov Moni? What do you think is holding back more aspiring Ghanaian filmmakers from reaching an international audience?
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