VIRI; THE RECAP

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It’s about that time in their movie cycle where they themselves get to seat back and watch the show unfold. After all the hard work is done, the buzz is created and all the attention gotten, the cast and crew of the revolutionary movie VIRI are warming up for the première.

Sometime in October we were approached with the idea of a potential collaboration between MMPR and a new project we saw had the desire to create a difference and be different. It was jam packed with uniqueness and a promise to portray outstanding unconventionalities. Though conflicted on the acceptance of this unlikely project to our market, we went ahead and took a risk as the project was not yet at a phase where we could see to make a judgement for ourselves as is customary to our work procedure. Today we are being celebrated for celebrating this work of art.

Let’s go through some spectacular moments we shared on VIRI shall we?

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Our online promo kicked off with an intro of the project and we did our very first profiling with the producer and actor Nkanya Nkwai. Here is a link for recap.

As we went on we spoke to other cast and crew members, we had one spectacular chat with one of the cast members, find out who that is on this link.

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As we progressed we had the pages of VIRI, MMPR and personal accounts flooded with VIRI pictures and articles. Here are pages you can catch on Facebook to bring you up to speed for the première… go here and here.

We had some fabulous bloggers share in the VIRI spirit; they took out their time to blog on and promote VIRI so a big S/O goes to Muke Alison, Yefon Mainsah, Tina Monique & Partner, TipTop Stars. Check out a few links here and here

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When we celebrated the life and experiences of Tata Nelson Mandela and found out the similarities he shared with the characters in VIRI, it was such an honour for us. Rest in perfect peace our Tata.

Then we got what seemed like a feasible existence of VIRI for the first time, the teaser poster and the teaser to the trailer. Then it became so real even in the eyes of you all.

The day we felt most lucky came as we unveiled the first ever VIRI movie poster. What was going to be its CD jackets and we had online reach of over 400.000 views and support.

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Since then support has continuously been amazing. We even got mentioned on GMC Cameroon as the trending thing online, we couldn’t be more blessed.

In under a few days leading to the première, the producer with a German engine Nkanya Nkwai has been able to tour almost every relevant radio and TV stations around the Littoral; South West and Centre provinces for promo talks – from STV, Canal2 Internationale to CRTV. Radio includes likes of FM 105, Sweet FM just to name a few.

The runners are almost at the finished line, the race is almost won, and we must not despair or doubt our dreams. Nkanya said “My goal is to reach 500people at least for the première night, it could still be more but I won’t be happy with less.”  Well, well Nkanya seems you are going to beat that after all. It’s been amazing growing this baby of yours together and come March 22nd we will all celebrate a victory like no other.

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Let’s all keep the VIRI dream alive and be there at Hotel La Falaise on Saturday March 22nd  at 7.00pm prompt. For more information about ticket sale, please call: 71674948 or 70615687.

Kudos to DreamsAlive Productions, the cast and crew of VIRI for a spectacular job. Catch the teaser trailer which received a huge cheer from our MMPR One guests below…

Follow Nkanya on Twitter: @NkanyaNkwai

Follow us on Twitter: @ModeMaisonPR

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VIRI THE TEASER TO THE TRAILER

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The VIRI trailer is about to be launched soon while behind the scenes the official première in Douala is being carefully planned.

So while the trailer is being finalised, we managed to sneak out a little preview for you our dear followers!! Yes, we couldn’t keep the excitement to ourselves and so we have decided to share our VIRI fine love!!

Where to go to watch this drama filled, emotional and romantic film with a 3 part storyline? The answer is right here:

Follow the film producer on Twitter: @NkanyaNkwai

Follow us: @ModeMaisonPR

VIRI – MEET THE CAST & CREW

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A few days ago, the teaser poster for the VIRI trailer was released online. The Cameroonian film industry is evolving everyday as more and more home movies are shot and produced. Some of which are obvious in the manner of story-telling and others, a true depiction of our culture, heritage and evolution. Nevertheless, since we are known for always bringing only the best, we have been presenting you with VIRIVIRI, a movie by film producer Nkanya Nkwai that intends to be different in story-telling and in technicality has hijacked our blog and we will ensure you are fully informed.

VIRI is an exciting film to be. A a drama thriller, a fictional trilogy of lack of communication, love and impunity. A perfect combination of sadistic, humorous, glamorous and adventurous characters that go through the known and the unknown, through a life path of different sequences that will ultimately lead them to their destiny.

Today we bring you our chat with its award winning DOP…

MMPR: Name, profession, role in VIRI. We have also heard people call you Ancestor, why is that haha?

YEAC: I am called Yibain Emile-Aimé Chah aka Ancestor. I am a Visual Artist / Filmmaker. I did play the role of a Director of Photography (Cinematographer) in VIRI.

Haha!  Ancestor??? … many say that it is because I reason more than my age or a mobile encyclopedia / Wikipedia, others say because I like to talk about things beyond or even go as far as to think that I am a mystic being and a recent few are attributing the name to the grey hair that is invading my head…To me, ‘Ancestor’ is just my artistic name. I had a group of friends; we were fond of addressing each other as “Ancestor” stemming from the adjectival expressions “My Grand or My Grand e Grand etc.” I liked the reactions I noticed each time I was called that name by the other ancestors (Ice Ndelle and his brother Leo), so I decided to sign all my Visual Art works with “Ancestor”.

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MMPR: What motivates you as a Director of Photography?

YEAC: My passion for Visual Arts and Design, Wave, Optics and Motion Dynamics are the things that first of all turned me into a Director of Photography when I got introduced into film making sometime in early 2000 by Mr. Mfuh Ebenezer of KM Productions and Honoree Mbecha of blessed memory.

What motivates me as a D.O.P. is the passion to create aesthetically beautiful / artistic images which are self-expressive, the availability of the right logistics / personnel to play with and a handsome paycheque.

MMPR: How demanding is it being a D.O.P? Is it hugely dependent on creativity?

YEAC: The  D.O.P. has many decisions to make before accepting a job offer, and a lot more to make after accepting the job before telling a film director he/she is ready to film.

1st –Read understand and appreciate the script and the story line in order to make critical suggestions about the film to determine the audience’s emotional reactions..

He/she chooses the kind of camera, lenses / lens stops, film format, camera speed, shutter angle, filters, the kind of lighting needed to create his shots based on an understanding with the D.O.P, the Production Designer and the Director.

2nd –Before the D.O.P tells the film director that he/she is ready to film, he/she must have made a decision on where to set the first lights, verify  the foot candles, choose the T/F –stop at which to set the lens, sets the right exposure, filters and ISO.

3rd–Because he/she is accountable for the way the picture looks, he/she does everything possible to render the director’s vision. The job of a D.O.P ends actually in the editing booth, for he influences and makes sure the final look of the film or movie is achieved and the director is satisfied.

So, being a D.O.P. is highly dependent not only on creativity, but on extensive reading, practice and above all honesty. A camera and all the accessories in my hands is like a pencil and a blank sheet in my hands. The question is what can I do with them?… what if…? My answer can only be ‘It is possible’.

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MMPR: What other projects have you worked on before and which has been most challenging?

YEAC: I have worked on quite a number of projects including on theatre as a stage designer and an actor, on music videos, TV spot Adverts, graphic designs and animations, TV programs, movies etc. either as an actor , art director/production designer, lighting director, sets and prop manager, costume designer, D.O.P, sound score and sound track design, editor writer, director and producer.  Yes, there are so many things I do well, but my focus is on Visual Arts and Photography.  I will like to list a few major projects I have worked on:

Peace Offering (Assistant Costume Designer); Mission to Damunza (Set Designer,  Actor)

Leather Gangsters (Lighting Director ,  Prop Design); Retribution (Lighting, Art Director, Sound Track  ); A Woman’s World (Lighting Director, 2nd  Camera Operator)

The Way To The Cross (Producer, Director, D.O.P., Editor); For Bitter For Woes (D.O.P)

Ninah’s Dowry (D.O.P., Actor); Ndolo Seka Chopstick (Director , Production Designer, D.O.P., Editor)

Obsession (D.O.P / Art Director); Door Mat (D.O.P); Memoire Du Sans (D.O.P)

Belleh (D.O.P); VIRI (D.O.P); COBWEB(D.O.P); A Little Lie a Little Kill (D.O.P)

Villagoise (2nd Unit D.O.P)

MMPR: How did you come across VIRI? So far what has been your best memory of VIRI?

YEAC: I was first told the story by Melvis the person who conceived the story line, and then I had a completely different image of the movie. I thought of it as a short length till I finally saw a full length version with an interesting twist Mr. Nkanya and his team had developed.  He approached me to come in as D.O.P. 

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MMPR: We have gathered that you worked on the award winning Ninah’s Dowry as D.O.P. what was it like being a part of this project?

YEAC: That is so far the best project I have worked on, because the director Victor Viyuoh knew exactly what he wanted; the challenges at hand, and his wonderful human resource management skills .The project was an intensive 3 months film making course for me, because we were on set for 3 months and I learned a great deal from Victor within the three months.

 I was quite timid during the first few days of shooting because I joined the crew not expecting to be the D.O.P, but a lighting director. Somehow, Victor thought he should trust me as a D.O.P… to me it was a miraculous challenge he had thrown on me, knowing the calibre of person he is and his cinematic experience that was far beyond mine. 

What is it like being a part of this project? – It is like a young bird that learned to fly, I won’t say I am proud to be part of it, I’ll rather say thank God for leading me into the project, because there was a thin line between me being part of the project and not being part of it, a very thin line.

MMPR: To put you on the spot a little, compare and contrast these two projects.

YEAC: VIRI is a very good project and has its own potentials that people should watch out for. Nkanya I will confess has the same kind of temperament with Victor. I enjoy working with those kind of people. He had two major things that worked against him, but which he finally overcame. The first one is time, and the second is the irrational behaviour of some of the actors else something greater than Ninah’s Dowry would have emerged. Nkanya in VIRI is a revelation, awards are waiting for him.

N.D. is the way it is because more time was taken, we were shooting a maximum of 3 scenes a day, we had time to do daily reviews , auto critics and even reshoot scenes not well shot and more to that, the cast and crew were very committed.

The common thing with both projects is that they are true representations of Cameroon’s rich and diverse cultures both urban and royal.

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MMPR: The thing we have heard most about this movie is the location and the demanding languages the actors used. What is your take on that?

YEAC: This was an excellent move that would be of global interest to the global film market. It is a good step towards what we say in cinema language “approaching verisimilitude”. It was challenging.  Originality is the best quality a piece of artwork can have, and it goes with reality or near reality (Verisimilitude). To me that is the essence of film making – using relevant equipment at our disposal to tell our indigenous stories, both in the urban and rural settings.

MMPR: Who is a D.O.P most likely to be handicapped without in a movie production?

YEAC: There are two key people:  an experienced director and an experienced production designer. 

The D.O.P has in his department which he/she runs lighting lirectors, camera operators and camera assistants.  *He/she must not necessarily operate the camera in exercising his/her function as D.O.P.

MMPR: Why should people rush to watch this movie when it is out?

YEAC: Because it is not only teaching and entertaining, because you and I and anyone exposed to the movie will feel that he/she is part of the unfolding story. It touches all age groups , and socio-cultural subjects. 

MMPR: Your last word?

YEAC: Courage brothers and sisters! There is more coming from the Cameroon Film Industry and there is hope. Stay focused and stay blessed. Signed – Ancestor.

And that concludes our little chat! Watch out for the official trailer coming soon on Youtube!

Follow the producer on Twitter: @NkanyaNkwai

Like the Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/VIRI-movie

Follow us: @ModeMaisonPR

VIRI – MEET THE CAST & CREW

As we continue with our #VIRIDiaries series here on the MMPR blog today we go behind the camera to present you with one of the directors on the film who is a very well known name within the Cameroon Film industry.

We catch up with Enah Johnscott, a native of Wum in the Menchum Division of the North West region of Cameroon and the second to the last born in a family of 10.

Please read below to find out more about him…

MMPR: MOST TIMES WE HEAR ABOUT THE DIRECTORS BUT WE MAY NOT REALLY KNOW WHAT A DIRECTOR’S ROLE IN A PRODUCTION IS. PLEASE ENLIGHTEN OUR READERS.

EJ: The director is the creative driving force in a film’s production acting as the crucial link between the production, technical and creative teams. Directors are responsible for creatively translating the film’s written script into actual images and sounds on the screen – they must visualise and define the style and structure of the film, then act as both a storyteller and team leader to bring this vision to reality. The director’s main duties include casting, script editing, shot composition, shot selection and editing.

MMPR: WHO THEREFORE IS THE DIRECTOR MOST HANDICAPPED WITHOUT?

EJ: I believe the director needs every one in a production. It is like a chain, if one knot is off, the chain is bound to fail and if one is also weak, the chain is in threat. In other words, a director is ruined with a weak d.o.p, equipment and alot more.

MMPR: WHAT PROJECTS HAVE YOU PREVIOUSLY WORKED ON?

EJ: “Triangle of Tears” will forever have its place in my heart since it holds my directing debut. Other films I have also placed a stamp on are; “Whispers”, “Decoded”, “The African guest”, “My Gallery” among others.

MMPR: HOW WAS IT LIKE WORKING ON VIRI COMPARED TO YOUR PAST PROJECTS? DID THE LOCATION OF VIRI HINDER OR FACILITATE YOUR WORK SEEING AS IT WAS A CHALLENGING ONE?

EJ: The location of VIRI did not hinder the job in anyway, instead it pumped open new directorial feelings and creativity was at its peak. I am first of all a village lover, a very common man, so I got a chance to finally exploit my love for nature and the common things. So, I was smiling within me!

MMPR: WHAT WERE THE CHALLENGES YOU FACED ON THIS PRODUCTION?

EJ: The movie VIRI came with a lot of challenges on like the others.Challenges because a great deal of the movie was done in the dialect, a dialect I myself had to learn so as to make the chain very feasible and know exactly what the movie needed. I must say, it was a film that brought another push in my career, It was such a good adventure in my profession. Learning the dialect of the Bembe (njare) people was quite tough, plus, I was severely ill, but thank God the Producer was always set with his medics. Aside that, it was a story telling project with lots of fun and laughter.

MMPR: MOST TIMES WE KNOW ACTORS CAN BE A GREAT INFLUENCE ON A DIRECTOR’S WORK. WHAT WAS THE CASE WITH VIRI AND HOW OFTEN DID YOU LOOSE IT ON SET? (LAUGHS)

EJ: It was quite difficult especially when some were unconscious of the call time.

MMPR: WE JUST LOVE ICONIC SCENES IN MOVIES,THE KIND THAT WILL BE TALKED ABOUT FOR YEARS TO COME. DOES VIRI HAVE THAT?

EJ: Hahaha, yes ofcourse, VIRI has got those kinds of scenes, but I believe the scene a lot of  the viewers will keep in mind is the very last scene of the movie, a scene where Desmond Wyte finally gets to …… his one year old fiancee Stephanie Fonachi in front of all the villagers and by a fire side.This scene has a lot of drama going on in it and I will not want to let the cat out of the bag beforehand!

MMPR: WHAT DO YOU THINK WILL BE VIRI’s CONTRIBUTION TO THE CAMEROON ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY? 

EJ: VIRI is that kind of a movie that will force a lot of movie makers and writers to think out of the box. I would like to seize this opportunity to say great job to the script writers, Itambi Delphine and Nkanya Nkwai as well as the conceiver of the story, Bechem Melvis.

MMPR: WHERE IN YOUR OPINION ARE CAMEROONIAN DIRECTORS FAILING AND/OR EXCELLING?

EJ: We fail as directors because we do not discipline our actors when they act off, we also fail when we put sentiments in casting as well as when we decide to stay quiet when approached with a weak script. Cameroonian directors have to learn how to stand up to some producers who always want to impose the wrong cast and poor scripts on them. We have to learn to be DIRECTORS!

MMPR: LAST WORD?

EJ: This is what a wisdom filled father told me…”nothing fails like success.”

And that brings us to the end of our catch up with Johnscott. Check out some images below…

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Follow the producer on Twitter: @NkanyaNkwai

Like the VIRI page: http://www.facebook.com/VIRI-movie

Follow us on Twitter: @ModeMaisonPR

VIRI – MEET THE CAST & CREW

So we have introduced you to the producer of the film, you have also met one of the lead male characters and now…well our #VIRIDiaries series continues as we introduce you to a lead female character.

VIRI is one of the first films within our newly created Cameroon Film Industry that truly believes in its potential to go viral and touch a much wider audience than its predecessors. Enlisting us as their PR partner was quite a leap by the producer Nkanya as the promotion side of our Cameroon made films has never been considered important.

Today we meet a charming, elegant beauty…her name is…

MMPR: TELL US WHO YOU ARE AS WELL AS WHAT MOTIVATES AND INSPIRE YOU.

SF: My name is Stephanie Fonachi. I am an administrator by day and an actress, a model and a blogger by night! I have always loved acting and it is one of my biggest passion. I have always known I was born to be a star ever since I was a kid as I love the camera, so acting was just something natural for me to do. Stars like Genevieve Nnaji and Sanaa Lathan inspire me a lot and I just love these ladies.

MMPR: TELL US ABOUT YOUR CHARACTER IN THE MOVIE AND ITS SIGNIFICANCE.

SF: I play the lead female character Liza, a young beautiful lawyer who finds herself in a complicated relationship with another lawyer. She is scared to fully commit to the relationship and to take it to the next level because of the deceptions in her past relationships. They go through struggles in their relationship but the end seems to be promising with a spectacular event at the end. You will have to watch it to find out! She’s just an exceptional strong character with a soft side!

MMPR: HOW HARD WAS IT FOR YOU TO PLAY THIS ROLE?

SF: Oh wow, the forest scenes where so challenging. It was really hard shooting in the forest however the role itself was enough to handle.

MMPR: WHAT OTHER PROJECTS HAVE YOU WORKED ON?

SF: VIRI is actually my 3rd project. I did The Giant Broom where I had a small role some years back and I also did Pink Poison by Agbor Gilbert playing one of the lead female characters.

MMPR: WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR MOST CHALLENGING ROLE YET?

SF: VIRI has been my most challenging role yet.

MMPR: WE HAVE TALKED TO THE OTHERS INVOLVED IN VIRI WHO MADE US KNOW THAT THIS WAS NO ORDINARY SET, IN YOUR OPINION WHAT WAS NOT ORDINARY ABOUT IT?

SF: The crew /casts were so amazing. I enjoyed every moment spent working with these people. It just made shooting so much easier.

MMPR: USUALLY MOST ACTOR’S PERFORMANCES STEM FROM THE SCRIPT, THE PRODUCER TO THE DIRECTOR. WHAT WAS IT LIKE WORKING WITH THESE RESPECTIVE STIMULATORS FOR VIRI?

SF: Johnscott was an amazing director. He just made me feel so comfortable and confident due to his ever large patience. The script was excellent, the writer Delphine did an absolutely great job and the producer Nkanya, he was so cool and easy to work with. The other actors were just amazing and easy to work with as well. I had a great time working with Desmond, Alenne and the others. It was really an amazing experience working with everyone involved in the project.

MMPR: AN ACTOR’S MOST FULFILLING MOMENT IS TO PORTRAY CHARACTERS PEOPLE CAN RELATE TO AND IDENTIFY WITH. WHAT IS IT ABOUT LIZA THAT WOMEN CAN IDENTIFY WITH?

SF: Liza is a beautiful smart career woman but she still has this soft warm side that makes her accessible and she also has struggles in her relationship which most women have. She is just easygoing with a fun kind of bad girl side.

MMPR: WHO IN TERMS OF PERFORMANCE MADE YOUR JOB MOST EASY?

SF: Working with Desmond was just amazing.  It was my first time meeting him and working with him but it just felt so easy as we instantly had a great connection on set. He is a cute guy too that helped (she laughs) and Alenne just made me laugh throughout. It was so hard keeping a straight face when shooting with him. He is an amazing actor. I can`t wait to work with him again.

MMPR: WHERE IN YOUR OPINION IS OUR FILM AND ENTERTAINMENT AT TODAY?

SF: We are still building it and we need Cameroonians to believe in it. We have it all in Cameroon and we will definitely make a difference in the nearest future I believe in the Cameroon Entertainment Industry. We are UNIQUE!!

MMPR: VIRI LAST WORD?

SF: VIRI is setting the standards high and I find it wonderful that young people are working so hard to bring the Cameroon Film Industry to the light and show the world that we have talented people in Cameroon too from great actors to DOPs to makeup artists to producers and musicians etc. We have it all in Cameroon but the sad part is we do not have investors because Cameroonians do not believe in their talents. So, we therefore urge you Cameroonians to believe in us, to encourage us and to help us change the face of our entertainment industry because we have that UNIQUE diversity in Africa.  Nevertheless, watch out for Liza and Seal in VIRI. You will just love this couple!!

Check out some images of Liza aka Stephanie onset and off!

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Keep up the VIRI lifestyle by liking their page here: http://www.facebook.com/VIRI-movie

Follow the producer: @NkanyaNkwai

Follow us on Twitter: @ModeMaisonPR