One of the most anticipated Nollywood films of 2019, 4th Republic, premiered on Sunday, April 7, 2018, at IMAX, Filmhouse Cinemas, Lekki, Lagos. The premiere offered a flash of deja vu to everybody present with its strong electoral theme.
Set in the fictional Confluence State, snatching of ballot boxes, resort to violence and killing of rivals, intimidation of election organisers’ staff, manipulations at collation centres, stifling evidences and obstruction of justice vis-à-vis a rigged election are all part of what 4th Republic explores in the movie. But its happy ending, with the triumph of a dogged governorship aspirant over a scheming opponent by seeking legal redress, sends the message that you cannot always overrule the will of the people.
With a dress code themed “Your Excellency”, stars and guests looked colourful at the Sunday premier. Members of the cast and crew were in attendance, including Kate Henshaw, Enyinna Nwigwe, Linda Ejiofor-Suleiman, Sani Muazu, Enyinna Nwigwe, Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju, Bimbo Manuel, and Yakubu Mohammed.
They were joined by star guests, Sola Sobowale, Waje, Tope Oshin, Chigul, Omojuwa, Kehinde Bankole, Linda Osifo, Lilian Afegbai, Denrele Edun, among others.
Directed by Ishaya Bako, the movie is woven around a rigged election, violence and an intense election tribunal to claim the seat of governor from a corrupt incumbent. Even youth corps members are used as willing tools by politicians. The love for lucre is lampooned.
Bako told newsmen at the premier, “The feedback has truly surpassed our expectations. I am very grateful to everyone for their turnout at premiere. We can’t wait for everyone to finally see our movie on April 12 (today) in Abuja.”
In the storyline, sequel to the murder of her campaign manager, Sikiru (played by Jide Attah), by suspected rivals, the governorship aspirant, Mabel King (played by Kate Henshaw), challenges the victory of the incumbent, Idris Sani (played by Sani Mu’azu) for her mandate. King is supported by her aide, Ike (Eyinna Nwigwe), and late Sikiru’s daughter, Bukky (Linda Ejiofor), while Sani’s associate, St. James (Bimbo Manuel), and Ike’s Law School rival, Danladi (Yakubu Mohammed), try to take down witnesses.
The plot is a satire on Nigeria’s recent political experience, against the backdrop of a presidential election marred by allegations of rigging, pockets of violence across the country, and an aggrieved presidential candidate in court for his mandate.
The Abuja premier of 4th Republic takes place today at the Dunes Centre, while the movie will be released nationwide today. It is distributed by FilmOne. 4th Republic is written by Emil B. Garuba and Zainab Omaki. The film is co-produced by Griot Studios Ltd. and Amateur Heads Productions with Bem Pever, Ishaya Bako, Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju and Ummi A. Yakubu serving as Producers. The film is funded by grants from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA). It was shot on location in Abuja, Lokoja and Lagos.