By Derin Olatunji
Oscars 2019 are just around the corner, and our very own Nigerian celebrities are playing a major role in the yearly event.
The 91st Edition of the Academy Awards will hold at the Dolby Theatre, Los Angeles, U.S. on Sunday, February 24, 2019. The Academy Awards are known officially and popularly around the world as The Oscars.
About 928 artistes and executives will be present at the event. Among them are 4 Nigerian-born individuals who have been recognised for their immense contributions to theatrical motion pictures.
Among them is renowned actress Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, known for her numerous works in Nollywood including ‘Alter Ego,’ ‘Last Flight to Abuja,’ ‘Ije,’ ‘The Tribunal’ and many more. She is one of the four Nigerian members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, whose votes will determine the next winners of the 2019 Oscars.
In 2018, Omotola was recognised for her roles in two Nollywood films, ‘A Private Storm’ and ‘Last Flight to Abuja.’ This led to an invitation from the Academy under the ‘Actor’ category.
Wunmi Mosaku, a British-Nigerian Actress also received her invitation under the same category. She was recognised for ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ and ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.’
In 2017, she won the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards (BAFTA) for ‘Best Supporting Actress’ in the TV movie, “Damilola, Our Loved Boy,” which was a retelling of the story of 10 year old Damilola Taylor’s murder.
Wunmi played the part of Gloria Taylor, Damilola’s mother.
In the ‘Documentary’ category we have Femi Odugbemi, the award winning producer of popular TV series ‘Tinsel’ who received Academy recognition for his works, ‘Bariga Boy’ and ‘Literature, Language and Literalism.’
Odugbemi is a producer, director, screenwriter, documentary filmmaker and photographer.
Ngozi Onwurah is a Nigerian-born British producer, lecturer and director. She received recognition and an Academy invitation in the ‘Short Film and Feature Animation’ category for her films: ‘The Body Beautiful’ and ‘Hang Time.’ At the Melbourne Film Festival, Australia, she won the Best Short Film Award and Best Documentary Award at the Montreal Film Festival, Canada for ‘The Body Beautiful.’