The Odeon cinema in Greenwich, East London will on Friday March 4th 2016, host the red carpet Premiere of “Woman”, a contemporary Cameroonian film about love and relationships.
The film examines the intricacies of Love and how it impacts on the daily lives of three different women. How the women manage their various experiences and who wins or keeps her man in the end, is as old a story as the human experience.
The London based film maker Goretti Etchu-Egbe is inviting all and sundry to attend the film launch and get the Goretti (film) Experience first-hand. Always supporting Black and Minority film makers, UK based charity Citizen Outreach Coalition (COC) will join the hundreds of fans during the launch in London.
COC official Vitalis Tanteh has been talking to Goretti Etchu-Egbe about the film launch and her future projects.
Q. Your film has a Short, sharp and descriptive film title; “Woman”. Why did you decide to name your film with a single word title?
Woman’ tells the story of 3 women within the context of romantic relationships. I assumed that women will identify with at least one WOMAN in the story.
Q. Without giving the game away for people who will be attending the premiere in London on Mach 4th, what is the film all about?
Like I explained before, “WOMAN” tells the of 3 women within the context of a relationship. It tells the story of a wife, a single lady and a woman who decides to live with a man when they are not yet married. The wife finds herself faced with infidelity from her spouse, the single lady’s relationship choices are questioned by her friend, and the lady in the ‘cam we stay’ situation has had enough. The film follows their different stories in its unique entertaining way.
Q. Some critics might think Cameroon where you come from and where the film was shot, has more issues you could address in a film other that just simple love and relationships?
There is always a more burning issue to be addressed; however the beauty of being a storyteller is that you tell the stories that you are passionate about. Human dynamics and relationships entanglements are what I am most passionate about. What drives us to make certain decisions, what makes us tick? Those are my passions. I may still tell those more burning issues but certainly within the context of what drove the characters to that point.
Q What are you hoping to achieve with a film launch in the heart of London, one of the most expensive cities on earth? What problems did you face organizing such an event?
I want to give hope to the aspiring Cameroonian filmmaker; hope that their dreams as a filmmaker are achievable. I will be organizing a premiere in London in March, tomorrow another Cameroonian film maker might do same in Hollywood. Everything is possible.
The biggest challenge I faced was getting sponsors from within the Cameroonian community. We hear it every day that Cameroonians do not support each other and often we chose to ignore that and stay hopeful. Sadly the reality is quite disappointing to be honest. I will use this opportunity to make a plea to all Cameroonians of good will. Supporting a fellow Cameroonian is not only beneficial to that one person; your support may indirectly impact a generation. After my premiere, what will history remember? A Cameroonian film was premiered at the Odeon cinema in the UK. That is what support does for your community. It is a win/win situation for the Cameroonian community.
Q. Talking about the film itself, who are the main characters and how did you go about auditioning to choose who appeared in the film?
We have 5 main characters in the film: Joe-Richard Pook, Epule Jeffrey, Ruth Nkweti, Charlotte Gobina and my humble self (Goretti Etchu-Egbe). Apart from Jeffrey and Ruth Nkweti, I recruited the rest of the cast through public auditions. You will be pleasantly surprised with their outstanding acting.
Q. You happen to be one of the actors in the film. You also double as the film producer. What are the challenges juggling both roles in the same film?
Oh boy! Where do I begin? The biggest challenge was staying in character as an actor. It is very difficult to maintain an emotional concentration when you are worried about the lights not being delivered on time, the next location not confirmed, the actor not available and so on. Quite an experience I tell you, especially being the first time I was juggling both.
Q.What do you think about Black/African film making in the UK?
I am very proud of some of the quality film that Africans in the UK are making. We are not being left behind. With our limited resources, we are making great strides within the UK film industry. Obi Emelonye is one name that comes to mind.
Q. Did you face particular challenges because you are a woman who had to shoot and direct a film in Cameroon?
My gender was never an issue. Instead I think it was a plus in that people were curious and very supportive.
Q. And finally, what should we expect from Goretti next
We have a pilot for a sitcom that was shot in Cameroon which is in postproduction. We are shooting another feature film in London this summer and hopefully another feature film in Cameroon before the end of the year. It is a busy year for The Goretti Experience in film making/production.