A Kannywood actor, Zaharadden Sani, has called on the Nigerian government to urgently look into the Kannywood film industry as it is in the brink of total collapse.
Speaking to PREMIUM TIMES in a telephone interview on Wednesday, Zaharadden said the Kannywood movie industry is crashing and needs urgent support from the government.
A video post he made on the issue went viral on his Instagram page as many of his colleagues shared the same thought and called for urgent action.
He called on the government not to provide any financial support to individuals. He said they should look at providing what is needed to revive the collapsing industry instead, which includes building viewing centres and cinemas.
"What I am saying is, we are at a point where we cannot trade the industry for personal gains. I heard that the government is working on something, like providing funding to support the industry.
"This is quite interesting. What I want the government to know, is, providing that fund to an individual will only end up in enriching a few.
"Whenever funds like these are given out, a few people will keep them for themselves and the industry will never benefit from it.
"What we need is for the government to directly come to our rescue by building cinemas and viewing centres across in major Northern states. That is what we need.
"Films do not sell anymore. We make films at a loss now and I challenge you to ask anyone. Most actors are running to start businesses.
"What we do now is produce films and sell it to Arewa, DSTV and other cable channels. The only Cinema we show our films now is Ado Bayero Mall and how much do you get from films you spend millions on?"
Zaharaddeen also revealed his experience as an actor and film producer.
"I know what it is now in the industry. We are all not happy and surely, piracy was what destroyed us.
"Since we cannot control the high level of piracy, only well-organised viewing centres and cinemas will help us, not providing the fund to some few and later they will use it for personal gains and not for the good of the industry.
"In the past, similar effort was done by the previous government, but, the only few people that got the fund used it for personal gains, not for the good of the industry.
"I produced a blockbuster movie, (Abu Hassan). It was a loss to me. After spending millions, I ended up selling it to DSTV at a way cheaper price. That is what we are all doing now. No show again."
A check by PREMIUM TIMES reveals the Kannywood industry is gradually getting replaced by Indian, Chinese and American Hausa dubbed movies. The films are readily available in Hausa on cable televisions for just a monthly subscription.
Hassana Dalhat, a Kannywood movie promoter and an analyst, said it is quite interesting to hear this coming from an actor and Producer of high calibre.
"Zaharadden has a point. I know that Kannywood and the industry is really falling. I share the same sentiments with him.
"The government should look at providing the infrastructure all over. What they need is to show the movies when produced. And the only immediate solution is the cinemas and viewing centres.
"That will do away with piracy that has crippled the industry. Providing funds to individuals end up in personal ventures, not for the good of the industry."