Nigeria is a staunchly anti LGBTQ+ country. Same sex intimate acts are criminalized and currently carry a 14 year prison sentence. Producer Pamela Adie is hoping to change minds and hearts with her film Ife, which means 'love' in Yoruba.
Ife tells the story of lesbian couple Ife and Adaora, and the hardships they face living in a country that forbids them being together.
"They come into problems when they are not certain of the future of their relationship considering that these two women live in Nigeria which is a homophobic country," Pamela said in an interview.
In a YouTube video on Ife The Movie channel, Pamela discussed what motivated this film. "This project was really to align with our mission and vision of sharing these experiences with Nigerians, and increasing visibility." She also said it's about social acceptance as well.
Uzoamaka Aniunoh, who played the title character, discussed the challenges portraying this character.
"Ife's very different from me, to be honest. Ife's the lover girl. I'm sort of like a lover girl too, but not to the same extent as the character. It's been very interesting," said Uzoamaka.
Cindy Amadi, who plays Ife's partner, Adaora, discussed her character and similarities between Adaora and herself: "Her personality is very different from my personality. There's not such a big difference, and not too many similarities."
Movie director Uyaiedu Ikpe-Etim discussed directing this groundbreaking film: "I just wanted to tell a story Nigerian queer women can relate to. As a storyteller what's important for me was representation. I want people to be able to see themselves."
We are are excited about this upcoming film, and can't wait to see it! Let's hold Nigeria can get one step closer to equality after its release.