Veteran filmmaker, Ivan Quahigah, has blamed the seeming fall of the Kumasi movie industry, popularly known as ‘Kumawood’, on the continuous flow of foreign soaps into the country.
The Chief Executive Officer of Farm House Productions Limited believes that the downfall of Kumawood has its causative roots in Ghanaians insatiable taste for Indian and Mexican telenovelas, which he said, have flooded the market.
“We saw the demise of Kumawood, it’s because of the translation of Indian and Mexican soaps into Twi”, he said on TV3.
Mr Quashigah was addressing students from Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) and National Institute of Film and Television (NAFTI) on TV3’s monthly business and mentorship programme, Time With the Captains Friday, October 25.
According to him, the demand for Akan movies started to dwindled the very moment telenovelas translated into the Akan language started airing on Ghanaian channels.
He fears if the trend continues unattended, it will worsen the unemployment problem in the country especially within the creative and movie industry.
The veteran filmmaker called for drastic measures to curb the situation, suggesting it is clearly an issue of policy, which lays at the doorsteps of government.
He questioned what laws and systems are in place to check television stations which air purely foreign content without promoting local content.
Mr Quashigah recommends a 70% dedication of airtime to broadcast local movies just as Nigerian media did to boost the market for local content.
For him, Ghana should adopt what he refers to as the Nigerian strategy which he said yielded good fruits.
He also advised industry players and associations to engage policymakers and private broadcasters to negotiate for balance in the media space.
This is not the first time Mr Quashigah has called for promotion of Ghanaian movies in the media. The award-winning film maker and producer of the famous “Things We Do For Love” series and its sequel “YOLO” believes telenovelas have eroded the Ghanaian culture.
“We have children who are speaking with some accent and adapting some behaviors which are alien to us”, he stated.
He sympathized with his counterparts saying it’s not easy to shoot a series given the costs involved.
By Ferdinard Tiekon|3news.com|Ghana