NAEAL’s Film Forward Project Makes Headway

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Film Forward, a National Adult Education Association of Liberia (NAEAL) project meant to scout for youths with talent, innovation and resilience, is said to be making impact in post-COVID-19 Liberia as far as film-making or production is concerned.

   According to Luther Mafalleh, NAEAL’s Project Manager, Film Forward Project has shot films and produced documentaries in time past in Lofa, Grand Bassa and Montserrado counties, and most recently in Nimba and Bong counties, thus tapping on the talents of the locals in those areas.

   Mafalleh, who directs Film Forward Project, made the disclosure at the auditorium of the YMCA conference hall in Monrovia recently when Film Forward Project screened some documentaries or films titled, “The School Girl”, “The Radio Man” and “The Fish Farmer”, among other inspiring films. They were watched by a cross-section of promising Liberian movie icons and movie enthusiasts as they were all thrilled by the filming.

   He revealed that NAEAL Film Forward Project is being supported by Weltfilme Germany, which has been instrumental in the training of trainer-of-trainers (TOTs) and providing technical assistance to ensure that the project achieves its set goals and objectives in society.

   He was also quick to add that, due to COVID-19 pandemic aftermath, the training, with sponsorship from Weltfilme Germany, was done online to get to people targeted for the training faster due to the adherence of COVID-19 prescribed protocols put in place by Liberia’s health authorities.

   Mafalleh made mention that specialized films and documentaries shown the audience are not for commercial purposes, but to be viewed at hotels to educate viewers about the rich talents of Liberians and the cultural heritage of the nation despite the sad effect of COVID-19 and send the signal that Liberia still get talented youths, whose talents need to be tapped for others to emulate in the movie industry.

   He then hailed the scores of Liberian promising youths, movie stars, trainees and well-wishers for gracing the occasion. “The innovation and resilience NAEAL is scouting for out there continues to come to fruition as many have expressed their desire to form part of the Film Forward Project documentary and film making training opportunities, to get on par with their counterparts globally.”

   Accordingly, the 16-minutes film, “The Fish Farmer”, shot in Nimba County, was produced by Joseph F. Doe and team.

   Doe opined that the spectacular film on the  poor fish farmer-turned-middle-class-man in Nimba, has likewise sent the signal that all is not lost here as film-making is said to be on the move with Film Forward Project making headway in the movie arena.

   For her part, Musuleng D. Mayon, producer of the film, “School Girl” (who was eager to get educated but was thrown out on the streets as an outcast in the Nimba County when a fake pastor duped her aunt and branded her a witch, which was not the case), said she wants the Liberia Movie Union (LMU) to collaborate with NAEAL to begin to further search for more young people with talent and seek funding to train them to become actors, film-makers and characters under the Film Forward Project.

   In special remarks, Eddie Gibson, President of the Liberia Movie Union (LMU), extended thanks to NAEAL, and especially its partner, Weltfilme Germany, for impacting the nation positively through technical assistance and training-of-trainers programs for members of Film Forward Project.

    Regarding the film, “The Radio Man”, it featured a man in his early 50s, a semi-educated resident of Nimba County who dreamed of becoming a radio technician. He invented battery cells and transmitter in the village and runs a self-styled community radio station in the area to educate, broadcast news in his vernacular, inform and entertain his listening audience in that part of the nation.

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