This stunning Akwa-Ibom lady is one of the award winning movie producers in Nigeria. She is a Nigerian screenwriter, film producer, and director.
Continue reading Emem Isong Biography
Emem Isong Biography
Emem Isong was born on the 5th of September and she hails from Ikono Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State in Nigeria. She is the first of her three siblings. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theater Arts from the University of Calabar. Also, she obtained a diploma in computer science from the Computer Science Institute (NCR)
She won the Eloy Awards, Best Movie Producer of the Year for “I’ll Take My Chances” (2011). In 2010, she won ZAFAA Awards, in the category of Best Producer for the movie “Memories of my Heart”.
She began her career in filmmaking in 1994 when she wrote the script and co-produced the movie Jezebel. Her very first solo production was for the movie Breaking Point in 1996. She then went on to work with Remmy Jez for eight years as a producer on his movies. This relationship lasted till 2008 when she decided to end their working relationship. It was in this same year that she co-produced the movie Reloaded
She has written or produced many movies which include: Reloaded, Breaking Point, She Devil, A Minute To Midnight, Play Boy, Private Sin, Master Stroke, Rumours, Shattered Illusion, and Promise Me Forever and Emotional Crack (2003) (screenplay), the latter of which was screened at the African Film Festival in New York City. She has also become known primarily for Yoruba language pictures and is a dominant figure in that industry.
The movies Emem Isong has been involved in are also noteworthy for being the launching grounds for various Nollywood talents including Stephanie Okereke, Dakore Egbuson among others.
In 2014, she directed her first feature film Champagne, which had its premiere at the Silverbird Galleria in Victoria Island, Lagos. In August 2015 she released the film Code of Silence, her second directed feature film which she also produced, working with the Royal Arts Academy and Nollywood Workshop, an international NGO that aims to encourage change in the society through the use of movies. The film, which deals with rape in Nigeria, stars Makida Moka, Patiece Ozokwor, Ini Edo, and Omoni Oboli.
Her expertise in the movie industry has also allowed her to be chosen as a speaker in the Afrinolly masterclass series and also as a judge for the MTN Afrinolly short film completion in 2013. In her movies she attempts above all to thrill the audience
She is known for her keeping her life private and prefers to stay mostly out of the public eye, she rarely grants interviews. This, according to her, is because she wishes her work to be consumed on its merits alone without her personal life influencing her viewers. However, she is married to Misodi Akama with whom she had twins with in 2016. She also has a son from a previous relationship.
She is categorized as a filmmaker who is not just interested in producing movies, but in producing movies that can be considered substantial and artful products. These movies are usually categorized by an extra effort made by the filmmakers to ensure not only the methods, but also the tools of production employed by the film makers are of substantial quality. It is no longer about production for the sake of production, but rather production for art’s sake. These movies are also made to have not only domestic, but also international appeal as they are usually released in cinemas in Nigeria and in also in foreign cinemas. This shift from home video production to cinema viewing is also a category of this New Nollywood movement.
In June 2010, Emem Isong founded Royal Arts Academy (RAA) to equip aspiring actors for the growing entertainment Industry and she has been the academy’s CEO. The Royal Arts Academy which she started with Uduak Oguamanam, Anietie Isong, and actress Monalisa Chinda, is based in Surulere, Lagos State, Nigeria. The academy has tasked itself with a mandate concerned with the empowerment of its students by giving them the necessary tools required to take part in all aspects of film creation and production. The academy is dedicated to producing students who can not just compete and excel in the Nigerian film industry, but also in the international film industry. Apart from teaching students what they need to begin a career in the movie industry, the academy also gives students the opportunity to win funding to help them begin their career by actually producing movies the general public can see.
Some of the movies she produced include:
- Jezebel, 1994
- Breaking Point, 1996
- Private Sin, 2003
- Promise Me Forever, 2004
- Masterstroke, 2004
- For Real, 2004
- Critical Decision, 2004
- Men Do Cry, 2005
- I Feel U, 2005
- Girls in the Hood, 2005
- Games Women Play, 2005
- Endless Lies, 2005
- Behind Closed Doors, 2005
- Traumatised, 2006
- Games Men Play, 2006
- Yahoo Millionaire, 2007
- Unfinished Business, 2007
- A Time To Love, 2007
- Reloaded, 2008
- Edikan, 2009
- Memories of War, 2010
- Holding Hope, 2010
- Bursting Out, 2010
- Kiss and Tell, 2010
- I’ll Take My Chances, 2011
- Silver Lining, 2012
- Forgetting June, 2013
- Knocking on Heaven’s Door, 2014
- Apaye, 2014
- Don’t Cry For Me, 2015
- Ayamma, 2016
Awards and nominations
- Her ability to produce creative movies made the New Nollywood movement list her as a Maverick. Because of this, she has bagged many awards, sme of the awards received by her are:
- ZAFAA Awards, in the category of Best Producer for the movie Memories of my Heart in 2010
- Wow Divas, Outstanding Contribution to Raising Awareness, Understanding and Hope to those Affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder and Advocating for them through her movie Silver Lining in 2012
- Eloy Awards, Best Movie Producer of the Year for I’ll Take My Chances in 2011
- Best of Nollywood, Special Recognition Award;
- Ntanla Awards, Industry Merit Awards.
- Nigeria’s Integrity Film Awards(HomeVida) in the category Family/Child Friendly Category for the movie Knocking on the Heavens Door in 2014
- Africa Movie Awards in the category of Best Scriptwriter for the movie Reloaded in 2008
- City Peoples Award in the categories of Best Producer of the Year, and Best Screenplay for the movie Reloaded in 2008
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