The “Black Star international Film Festival” feels like an overdue initiative for the film industry in Ghana. The audio-visual media has been recognized the world over as a powerful tool for development and acculturation. It was the instrument of choice for imperial domination of colonized territories through mass propaganda. The media has been used to make the colonial people believe that colonialism, even in its most barbaric form, was in the best interest of the colonized people, thus making some pre-independent politicians even kick against the granting of independence to their countries. That is the power of the tool in our hands.
However, owing to the absence of an effective organized effort, we as a people have failed to realize the full potential of this powerful tool. In the worse case, in countries like Rwanda and Burundi, the media has been used for less than noble political and ethnocentric purposes with catastrophic consequences.
I believe the birth of the “Black Star International Film Festival”, is welcome news for the industry and it’s objectives are noble. It would not only challenge industry stakeholders to improve the standards of audio-visual productions, but also, provide, through research, relevant policy alternatives to help with advocacy for the industry in the affairs of not only the state, but also the entire African Continent.
In this way, the industry would become a more active and relevant partner in Africa’s development effort and claim its rightful place in the governance process.