We screened Nigerian filmmaker C.J. Obasi’s last feature film, "Ojuju," at the New Voices in Black Cinema Festival in March – a well-received film by festival attendees, as well as the press (including an awesome review from The Hollywood Reporter). Made on a shoestring budget, "Ojuju" is an impressive, subversive take on the zombie genre, and helps cement Obasi as a filmmaker to watch.
He’s already moved on to his next film – from tackling the zombie sub-genre, to now delving into the crime-thriller, with "O-Town," a film he wrote and is directing, currently in post-production.
Here’s a breakdown of the upcoming movie: "The story of a small town as told from a mysterious filmmaker’s point of view. O-town is the town of his birth, and Peace, a two-bit hustler is at the center of all that has gone wrong with the town. The mysterious filmmaker has a near omnipresent overview of the pimps, the scammers, and the drug dealers as they ravage the moral backbone of a town wholly subjugated by a sadistic and suavely mannered gangster, simply known as The Chairman…but not for much longer."
It reads like another renegade take on a familiar genre, with contemporary Nigeria as the backdrop, and I’m looking forward to it!
The film stars Paul Utomi as Peace, and Kalu Ikeagwu as The Chairman.
Chucks Chyke, Brutus Richard, Delvin Ifeanyi, Ifu Ennada, and Lucy Ameh round out the starring cast.
Oge Obasi is producer.
Set for premiere later in the year, Obasi has been steadily spreading pre-debut awareness of the film (something that I wish more black filmmakers did more often), by first releasing a very early teaser trailer, followed by a poster, and now individual character posters, highlighting the film’s main players – the actors and the roles that they play in the upcoming movie. I’ve embedded all 9 character posters below, after the short teaser (emphasis on "teaser"):