A group of Nigerian teens have gone viral for producing movies using a smartphone and a tripod made from a broken microphone stand.
“Well the main aim was not for our stuff to go viral, we just wanted people to see that okay there are kids in Kaduna doing something different, so that was just the main aim. All of a sudden it blew our mind and it made us happy,” says Godwin Josiah aged 19.
These days, sci-fi films are made using sophisticated software. But the films created by these teens uses recycled items. Their work has catapulted them into social media darlings.
In 2016, crew of 8 made their first film “Redemption” in a similar process. The production was funded by a month worth of savings. It was from these funds that the group bought the green fabric for the chroma key and trained themselves on visual effects by watching tutorials on Youtube.
Battling slow internet and power cuts, they created a tale of two boys who create an organic bio-fuel.
The Nigerian teens have established their own niche in Sci-fi, a very different area compared to the Nollywood themes of witchcraft, cannibalism and weeping girlfriends who put curses on their errant boyfriends.
Their short stories, which are usually not longer than 10 minutes are a celebration of African heroes. The 20 short movies they have released to date are mostly about super heroes, aliens and supernatural powers.
However, the teens have defied the capital constraints that hold back many African youths from pursuing their passions. The production has no costs involved because it is self funded. This has prompted them to make their production short so that it does not take too long to upload.
Their efforts impressed Nollywood movie producer Kemi Adetiba so much she tweeted enthusiastically about them in June, the students, known online as @thecritics001, have since gone viral.
A funding campaign for the boys amassed donations of about 5,800 USD leading them to upgrading their equipment.
“One of the targets we aim for in the years to come is to make the biggest film in Nigeria and probably beyond. We want to do something crazy, we want to do something great, something that has not been done before, and from what has been going on now, we believe quite well that it is going to happen soon enough,” said Josia.