Ghanaian A-List Actress and one time African Movie Academy Awards winner of the Best Actress in a Leading Role, Lydia Forson, has been unveiled in Lagos as the 10th anniversary brand ambassador.
The unveiling event, which took place at the African Sun, Amber Residence Hotel, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos State, was a huge media event that had tens of journalists covering print, broadcast and online news media organisations.
An extremely elated Forson, who spoke from the heart, said her relationship with AMAA started about seven years ago when she first attended the award in Nigeria out of curiosity.
It was the first time she was nominated for the awards.
She said: “I came to Nigeria and bought my ticket myself because I missed my AMAA arranged flight.
“That year, I didn’t win but I was amazed by the quality of filmmakers and professionals in the industry I met.
“I was like waoh this is how huge this platform is.
“I have formed life-long relationships from AMAA because I have been coming every year after the first time.
“I met Kunle Afolayan at AMAA and he told me he liked my acting and he would like to work with me.
“Two years after, he called me to work on his set for his film: Phone Swap.
“I have also met colleagues from other parts of the world through AMAA that I have built rewarding relationship with.
“The icing on the cake for me was when I won AMAA as Best Actress with Jackie Appiah and the doors it opened for me.
“The calls for jobs were coming in from different parts of the world and when I asked why they were all calling me for some of the career defining jobs I got after I won they said but you are have just been crowned as the best actress in Africa.
“AMAA is ours and we must support it.
“There are challenges here and there, which people have talked about but for me AMAA is bigger than any logistics problem and the advantages and benefits are huge.
“AMAA will continue to get better and overcome some of the challenges.
“As practitioners in the industry we must be united and support our own. AMAA is getting bigger and bigger every year.
“It started with Nigeria and about three countries participating in the early years but it has grown big now with almost all countries in Africa participating.
“Peace and her team have done great job and we must commend them.”
As AMAA ambassador, Forson is expected to travel across Africa and around the world to engage with critical stakeholders in a year-long speaking engagement activities.
In the same vein, the organisers of the prestigious awards announced a People’s Choice Awards system as part of the way of re-engaging with the past winners of AMAA and create a two-way communication between the past winners and the populace.
Peace Anyiam-Osigwe said: “We are giving the public across Africa to choose their best from our past winners in all the categories.
“This is different from the main award, which is Jury based.
“Our PCA is to bring back our past winners and allow the public to choose the best of the bests.
“For our PCA, winners in each of the categories will get cash reward of $10,000 each and the public will have chance to text and win.
“It is our 10th anniversary next year and Africans will have opportunity to win fabulous prizes ranging from phones, Ipad and a car by texting who is their best among our bests of the past nine years.”
Journalists are not left out of the reward system as those who have covered AMAA in the last nine years will be rewarded.
This will be through a selection process by media professionals, who will assess their past reports and reports they will write on AMAA till March 2014.
According to Steve Ayorinde, the Chairman of the Jury for the 10th anniversary edition, journalists in the print, broadcast and online will have a chance to win $5000, $3000 and $2000 respectively by submitting their best two articles and or feature stories that depict the essence of AMAA and impact on African Cinema.
Ayorinde said: “This media award is open to all journalists in Africa and we will have the first, second and third prizes and the biggest amount goes to the journalist with the best story.
“So, if you think you don’t have any good story in the last nine years, start writing now till March 2014.