IT was another memorable outing for the organizers of the prestigious AfricaMagic Viewers Choice Awards,AMVCAs, as this year’s edition of the awards ceremony held amid pomp last Saturday night, in Lagos.
But beyond the glamour and razzmatazz that pervaded the event, the night was filled with emotions, laughs and tears. There were minor ‘flaws’, just as there were memorable moments that would make this year’s outing a night to remember fondly for years to come. From the red carpet to the awards presentation, and performances, it was indisputably a gathering of stars that would not be forgotten in a hurry. On the flip-side, the award has become an annual ritual where celebs show off their stylish and glitzy outfits. Madness on the red carpet As opined by filmmaker and movie critic, Charles Novia, nothing less than N30 million worth of clothes and accessories must have been made as income for the fashion and makeup industry just for the occasion. Interesting, being the biggest movie awards on the continent at the moment, stars look forward to the awards night. And this year’s edition was not different. At the Convention Centre, Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, where the glamorous show held amid pomp, it was a celebration of the ‘best of the best’ in African movie sector. Nollywood stars came out in their numbers to grace the awards night. It was an impressive turn-out that left many wondering loudly whether it was a ‘Nollywood affair or not.’ But whatever you think about the awards night, it had the superstars display their different styles, fashion and glamour walking the red-carpet. For starters, the stars were dressed in their usual glamorous style. But there was something different about this year’s red carpet event. While some of the actors were dressed in their suits and colourful outfits, the actresses were adorned in their various shades of screaming make up, sexy outfits, stunning fashion accessories , ready to get the paparazzi’s attention and show up in popular blogs .A colleague described the sensuality on the AMVCA’s red carpet as, “The harvest of boobs”. They were battling to outdo one another walking on the red carpet. The heat that saturated the red carpet made some actresses sweat while awaiting their turns to be interviewed and pose for shots. The eminent part of them disappeared to uncover their frail side. A popular Nigerian rapper could not help the madness when he muted, “Oh boy! look at the way they are struggling to be noticed on the red carpet.” It was like a marketplace where everyone was trying to sell his or her wares. Days after the AMVCAs, award winning film maker Mildred Okwo expressed her thoughts on what transpired on the red carpet. She puts it this way: “Am I the only one that noticed new arms, new butts, new waists and hips on the red carpet? May be my eyes are failing me o”. She further adds: “AMVCAs is a good time to show off that new job. Lots of new body parts on the red carpet last weekend” Among those who looked splendid in their designer’s attires were Rita Dominc, Ini Edo, Omoni Oboli, Nse Etim-Ikpe, Ebube Nwagbo, Mercy Aigbe, Dakore Egbuson-Akande, Van Vicker, Uche Jombo, Ruth Kadiri, Ibinabo Fiberesima and Alex Ekubo. Others include OC Ukeje, Stepnanie Linus, Funke Akindele, Genevieve Nnaji, Damilola Attoh, Annie Idibia, Seyi Shay, Caroline Danjuma, Mike Ezuruonye, Richard Mofe Damijo…the list is endless. IK Osakioduwa and South African presenter Minnie Dlamini hosted the event. Moment of surprises and emotions! Unlike the previous editions, this year’s AMVCA sprang up surprises among the audience. It had more young actors outshining the established ones. Leading the pack was the star of Tunde Kelani’s movie, ‘Dazzling Mirage’ and Mildred Okwo’s “Surulere” , Kemi Lala Akindoju who won 2016 “Trailblazer” award and walked away with a brand new SUV from JAC motors. Also, rising actress Adesua Etomi beat the likes of Genevieve Nnaji,Nse Ikpe-Etim amd Mary Lazarus to clinch Best Actress drama(female) award for her role in “Falling.”Another new kid on the block, Daniel K Daniel won the Best actor drama(male) for his sterling performance in ‘A Soldiers Story.’ Funke Akindele won the Best Actress, Comedy for her role in her movie, “Jenifa’s Diary”, while Genevieve Nnaji won Best Movie West Africa for “Road To Yesterday” which was nominated in six other categories. Stephanie’s advocacy movie “Dry”, was nominated in 9 categories, won three awards including Best Overall Movie in Africa, Best Sound Editor (Marquex Jose Guillermo) and Best Costume Designer (Uche Nancy). Stephanie walked away with a brand new SVU car. Interestingly, while many winners were excited receiving their awards, others broke down in tears. An emotional Bukky Ajayi received a standing ovation from the audience who acknowledged her contributions to African film and cinema spanning over 50 years. She was honoured with the Industry Merit Award alongside Sadiq Daba. As the screen icon was lifted to the stage in a wheel chair, she muted, “Are you all standing for me?”, adding “If I stand up I will fall down.”Silence enveloped the hall as she took a brief moment to let the tears flow. The event, hosted by the brilliant duo of IK Osakioduwa and South African TV host Minnie Dhlamini, featured excellent performances by artistes such as Flavour, Yemi Alade and Zonke. Also, brilliant comedic displays by Ugandan comic Salvador, and Thomas Gumede from South Africa spiced up the evening.