Alfazazi Muhammad is one of the major players in the Kannywood film industry with an impressive resume on and off the camera. He speaks exclusively Dateline Nigeria.
You started out as an actor, but now you have become a director. Why the switch?
You see, filmmaking is a business and therefore all about interest. All the people you see in this industry have one or two interests why they joined.
So like other players in the industry, I joined because acting has always been a hobby to me. But after starring in some films I decided to try other off-camera roles, like scripting and directing, but I do more of the latter.
How has the coronavirus pandemic affected the film industry?
The coronavirus pandemic affected not only the film industry, but all other sectors of the economy around the world. So since it has affected the global economy it is to expected that it will affect us because we don’t live in isolation.
Take the cinema, for instance. Majority are still under lock and key because of the pandemic. So it is our fervent prayer that the Almighty Allah will bring an end to the pandemic.
What role is the government playing in the Kannywood film industry?
It appears as if the government is overwhelmed. There is little or no supporting role being played by the government in our industry. We do virtually everything ourselves. Indeed, the government is the one benefiting from us because we pay taxes and other royalties.
Tell us some of the works you have done, or the ones you are working on this year.
There are quite a number I did this year. There is Haduwar Hanya by film star Zahraddeen Sani; There is Ribar Duniya, by producer Alin Dman in which Adam A. Zango is the lead actor. I have also done series called Naladidi featuring Kannywood stars including Adam A. Zango, Rahama Sadau, Umar M. Sharif and so on.
How do we solve the problem of frictions among players in the film industry?
We will need true leadership, which is our main problem. Leaders are the ones who intervene whenever there is problem. But our own leadership is still a work in progress. It is just like the Nigerian leadership. Once we get that right, other things will naturally fall into place.