Renowned actress and filmmaker Stephanie Linus has been appointed as the new Chairperson of the Nigerian Official Selection Committee (NOSC) responsible for the Best International Feature Film (IFF) category at the Oscars. This development follows the approval from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) for a restructured 14-member NOSC team and the departure of its founder and former Chairperson, Chineze Anyaene-Abonyi.
The reconfigured NOSC team includes prominent figures from the Nigerian film industry. These members encompass Dr Chidia Maduekwe, Managing Director of the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC); Dr Victor Okhai, President of the Directors’ Guild of Nigeria (DGN); veteran actress Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde; Mr Andy Amenechi, former President of DGN; Yibo Koko, a distinguished theatre practitioner; and Izu Ojukwu, a writer/director.
Additional members of the NOSC consist of Adetokunbo’ DJ Tee’ Odubawo, a skilled cinematographer; prolific film producer Emem Isong; director Dimeji Ajibola; Jude Idada, a writer/director; Ngozi Okafor; John Njamah, a director; and the versatile actress Meg Otanwa.
With the 96th Academy Awards on the horizon, the newly formed NOSC team faces the responsibility of gathering, evaluating, and voting on submissions to determine Nigeria’s representation in the IFF category. The NOSC emphasizes that the diverse creative backgrounds of its new members will contribute to the selection process of the finest Nigerian film.
The IFF category, formerly known as Best Foreign Language, is an annual accolade presented by the Academy to a feature-length film originating outside the United States. A crucial criterion for eligibility is that the film must comprise 50 per cent or more non-English dialogue. Moreover, submitted films must adhere to specific guidelines outlined on the NOSC website, including accurate English subtitles, shooting formats, and theatrical releases.