Senegalese actress comes to Nollywood

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 *Set to star in Biafran war epic

By Benjamin Njoku

International sensation and César nominated actress, Aïssa Maïga will join a pan-African cast in the epic Nigerian civil war film ‘A Forgotten Place’ written and directed by the award-winning US-based Nigerian film maker, Odera Ozoka.

The Senegalese-born, French-raised actress will take on the lead female role. Odera made this revelation recently while in the country. He said Maiga will be starring in the film alongside  two other international actors when they commence filming in August in the country.

“Three international actors are already on the list of stars to be featured in the film. One of them  is a Senegalese-born, French-raised Aïssa Maïga.  I’m planning to feature actors from Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria,” Odera disclosed, stressing that Egbunike Cave in Anambra State has been penned down as one of the locations to be used for filming.”

   Aïssa Maïga and Odera Ozoka

Describing the film as a story about  forgiveness, reluctance, and struggle, Odera revealed that the film will be featuring about 500 casts, with 20 as regulars. “ I’m coming  back in May to start casting for the movie,”he further disclosed.

‘A Forgotten Place’ is a historical fiction odyssey story about the struggles to survive and find family amidst a war-torn country and is scheduled to begin production in August, on location in Nigeria and across Africa. The film was the recipient of the Project Act Nollywood grant and is working in collaboration with companies across the continent, in Europe, and in the United States. The production is breaking Nollywood norms with an international cast, and Aïssa Maïga’s attachment follows the news of her fellow French actress Roxane Mesquida’s announcement last week.

Aïssa’s involvement in ‘A Forgotten Place’ comes after a slew of diverse roles in 2016, including the French comedies ‘Bienvenue à Marly-Gomont’ (The African Doctor) and “Il a déjà tes yeux (He Already Has Your Eyes) , Dominque Cabrera’s adaptation ‘Corniche Kennedy’, and the South African Afrofuturistic feature ‘Comotose’ due for release in early 2017. ‘A Forgotten Place’ will be a heavy, dramatic role for the malleable actress. Aïssa is in conversation with Ozoka and producer Ashley Ellis about the preparations for the role.

The production will feature the best of African talent and Aïssa is no exception.

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