According to Razz Newspaper which comes out each and every Wednesday in Ghana, the Film Producers Association of Ghana (FIPAG) and the Ghana Actors Guild are upset with Hollywood actor-Idris Elba and his team, who recently came to Ghana to shoot a movie.
According the Newspaper’s report, when Idris Elba and his team touched now in Ghana, they failed to follow protocol and failed to meet the leaders/executives of the above mentioned Film bodies in the country.
The President of Ghana Actors Guild, Mr. Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah told the paper that Idris Elba and his crew did not officially introduce themselves to him and his Executives. Mr. Odoi said, “This cannot be done anywhere! You can’t do this in America! If you are a foreign actor in another country, it’s most appropriate to meet the executives of their actors’ guild.”
Read below for the full report by Razz;
President of the Film Producers Association of Ghana, FIPAG, Mr. Asare Hackman is very bitter at prominent British actor, Idris Elba, for snubbing the association’s directive for foreigners who come to Ghana to shoot movies.
Graphic Showbiz reported about a month ago that Idris Elba and his crew were in Ghana to shoot some scenes for his new movie – ‘Beasts of No Nation.’ They earmarked Koforidua, Takoradi and other places as locations for shooting the scenes.
Idris Elba, his team and the cast – which includes some Ghanaian actors such as David Dontoh, Ama K. Abebrese, and Grace Nortey, are presently shooting scenes at the mentioned towns.
Leadership of FIPAG launched a directive for non-Ghanaians who make films in the country to acquire a work permit in order to work in Ghana. The campaign, according to the Public Relations Officer for FIPAG, Michael Kwaku Ola, was meant to protect the Ghanaian movie producers and the industry as a whole and not to scare off the foreigners.
“People have in the past sneaked in and out of the country to shoot movies and documentaries among others without any work permit or permission from FIPAG. Well guess what, things have changed now. FIPAG, together with the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) will make sure that the right thing is done,” Michael Kwaku Ola stated.
He continued: “I hear people saying that, what we are doing will prevent foreigners from coming into the country for their filmmaking project but that is not true. We are rather encouraging them to follow right procedures.” In fact, per FIPAG’s directive, foreigners who come to Ghana to shoot movies must pay a certain amount of money to the association.”
Razz Newspaper therefore visited the office of FIPAG and asked Mr. Hackman if Idris Elba and his crew have sought a work permit from the association or have in anyway paid any courtesy call on them – but his answer was negative.
“They did not call on us but they should have. You can’t go to British and shoot a movie without having any memorandum of understanding with the film producers association there. Let me tell you something and you can check from them – Mr. Kwaw Ansah once sent his movie to London to edit. He was told to register with the editors association in London and to also use British editors to edit the movie. A similar thing happened to award-winning scriptwriter, Abeiku Sagoe, when he once went to USA to write a script for a Hollywood studio.
I learnt they (Idris Elba) have officially met the Ministry of Information of which the film industry has a desk there. We are under that ministry. But that does not insulate Idris and his team from officially meeting FIPAG as well as the Ghana Actors Guild as foreigners who are on our soil to shoot a movie.”
In a separate interview with President of Ghana Actors Guild, Mr. Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah, he also told Razz Newspaper that Idris Elba and his crew have not officially introduced themselves to him and his Executives. Mr. Odoi said, “This cannot be done anywhere! You can’t do this in America! If you are a foreign actor in another country, it’s most appropriate to meet the executives of their actors’ guild.”
Elba is best known for his portrayal of drug lord and aspiring businessman, Russell “Stringer” Bell in the HBO series, ‘The Wire,’ Detective John Luther in the BBC One series ‘Luther,’ and Nelson Mandela in the biographical film, ‘Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.’
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