Legon International Film Event Held

Prof. Kweku Osam, Pro-Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic and Student Affairs

The first ever Legon International Film Event (LIFE) organized by the Department of Theatre Arts of the School of performing Arts, has taken place at the University of Ghana. The event was on the theme; “Ghanaian Climatic Practices: Achievements, Challenges and Prospects”.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Prof. Kweku Osam, Pro-Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic and Student Affairs (ASA) who represented the Vice-Chancellor described the Event as the beginning of bigger things to come. He noted that it is taking place at a time when academic study of film is taking root at the University. Prof. Osam expressed the hope that such a historic event will provide an opportunity for participants to appreciate the work of their pioneers.

Mrs. Olivia Opoku Adoma, Ministry for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts

A Director at the Ministry for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Mrs. Olivia Opoku Adoma who spoke on behalf of the Minister, said Government acknowledges and appreciates the relentless efforts by the School of Performing Arts in training personnel for the creative industry. She enumerated some of the benefits of the film industry which include projecting the African identity, uniting the nation as well as providing employment opportunities. She noted that for the film industry to continue to contribute to GDP, it must meet international standards.

Mrs. Opoku Adoma called on film practitioners to take regular refresher courses. On the Policy level, she announced that her ministry is working with the relevant partners to get the Cinematography bill passed. She invited film practitioners to avail themselves to attend the upcoming consultations on the Bill. 

Mr. Kwaw Ansah, Guest of Honnour

The Guest of Honor for the opening ceremony, award-winning Ghanaian film-maker and Chief Executive Officer, of TV Africa, Mr. Kwaw Ansah, said events such as LIFE highlight the important role audio visuals and films have played in national development. He added that developed countries like the United States of America, have through Hollywood, used audiovisuals to develop their country. Mr. Kwaw Ansah indicated that, in some cases, the western world has used films and the mass media to re- colonize Africans by indoctrinating Africans to reject African culture and embrace theirs.

Interim Provost of the College of Humanities, Prof. Samuel Agyei Mensah

The Interim Provost of the College of Humanities, Prof. Samuel Agyei Mensah, disclosed that, he has observed with keen interest, the growth of the Department of Theatre Arts  in terms of infrastructure and academic programs. He said that film and cinema should not be seen merely as cultural artifacts but important agents of change in terms of development. He charged the School to translate the academic aspects of their work in practical terms and collaborate with the industry as well as the business sector to promote the film industry in the country and beyond.

Acting Director of the School of Performing Arts, Prof. Kofi Agyekum

Earlier, the Acting Director of the School of Performing Arts, Prof. Kofi Agyekum in his welcome address identified Language, Culture and Creative Arts as some of the useful elements of every developing country, which should be preserved and documented for the future. He stated that the Event provides an opportunity by which the School could collaborate with other Institutions. Prof. Agyekum expressed the conviction that deliberations at the event will help widen the research scope of faculty and students of the School.

Dr. Cosmos Badasu, Acting Dean of the Faculty of Arts

Acting Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Dr. Cosmos Badasu, congratulated the Department for taking up such an initiative. He charged the Department to use the event to identify the challenges the Ghanaian film industry is facing and indicate the way forward for the industry. He commended the organizers of the event for drawing the attention of the world to University of Ghana and wished participants academically stimulating discussions.

Mr. Africanus Aveh, Head of the Department of Theatre Arts

The Head of the Department of Theatre Arts, Mr. Africanus Aveh expressed gratitude to all who supported the maiden edition of the LIFE.  He said the Event was borne out of the need to create a platform for film practitioners to share ideas on how images and sound affect human life. He said the deliberations from the Event will inform practitioner on how to appropriately craft their work to achieve needed results.

Prof. Esi Sutherland-Addy, Chairperson for the opening ceremony

The opening ceremony was chaired by Prof. Esi Sutherland-Addy, of the Institute for African Studies.  She called on the Departments at the School of Performing Arts to examine ways by which film can be used as outlets for their various creative works. She urged Faculty members to encourage their student to actively participate in the events lined up.

The Legon International Film Event was attended by academics, students and practitioners in the creative arts industry. There were paper presentations, roundtable discussion as well as concurrent film screenings at designated places on the University of Ghana campus.


Some guests at the opening ceremony