Film director and producer Shirley Frimpong-Manso has bemoaned the seeming death of the sale of DVDs in Ghana.
According to her, the non-existent market for DVDs has hindered the growth of the industry because producers are unable to make sales after they finish shooting their movies.
Speaking in an interview with Myjoyonline.com after the press preview of her internationally acclaimed, ‘Potato Potahto” at Silverbird Cinema at the Accra Mall, the producer said the movie industry has simply taken a nose dive.
“The movie industry in Ghana has basically just taken a nosedive, it’s not been the same like the days of the ‘Perfect Picture’, the days of ‘A Sting in a Tail’ we seem to have had an upsurge and it suddenly went away,” she said.
CEO of Sparrow Productions explained that “our DVD market is collapsed completely. It just seems like the ‘dumsor’ (load shedding) period also didn’t help because people needed to spend money on perhaps getting fuel than perhaps buying a DVD."
The award-winning director noted that several producers, including herself, in spite of financial challenges tried to still produce movies with the hope of raking in some cash afterwards but people were not buying the movies.
She said one of the most important things for the industry is people willing to produce movies with their own money knowing the risks involved.
“People are not buying the movies anymore,” Mrs Frimpong-Manso noted adding “the DVD markets are not there anymore as we used to sell about 150,000 copies of DVDs.
"Now you are lucky if you sell a thousand,” she observed.
“It is like a risk that you know you are definitely bound to fail…that is why some of us have taken calculated steps to change things a little. If you realise, ‘Potato Potahto’ has been out for almost a year…we decided to take a different approach,” the producer revealed.
“We’ve been to festivals, where we have done very well at,” she said.
‘Potato Potahto’ is set to premiere in Nigeria and South Africa, which will be her first time of premiering there.
According to her, “the market here hasn’t grown and we are not saying we’ve given up on it…the government needs to help and we are not talking about the government putting money in our pockets, we are talking about policy.
"We are talking about engaging in talks with other businesses so we can get distribution platforms etc.”
‘Potato Potahto’ – a beautiful movie!
‘Potato Potahto’ tells the story of a divorced couple who decide to share equal space in their ex-matrimonial home soon realize that the ingenious idea is easier said than done.
Bent on flexing their egos and scoring points, the two implore various hilarious tactics that soon inflames emotions and turns an already complicated situation into a roller coaster ride.
When his ex-wife, Lulu, then hires an attractive young man to help her out, a rfunny ride of laughter, jealousy and tears ensues.
‘Potato Potahto’ stars an impressive cast that includes, OC Ukeje, Joselyn Dumas, Joke Silva, Chris Attoh, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Nikki Samonas, Adjetey Anang, Lala Akindoju, and Victoria Michaels.
The movie premieres at Silverbird Cinemas at the Accra Mall and West Hills Mall on November 30.
Dan Soko is a short story author and web content editor. He has work appearing or forthcoming in over a dozen venues, including GhanaScoop, Nigeria Daily News and CapitalBay. When he’s not frightening strangers with his post and writing, he’s most likely frightening his wife Mimi and their two mischievous cats: Buttons and Snaps. You can visit him at www.ghananation.com/author/webby.