Award winning film maker, Dickson Iroegbu in this interview with Dr Uzor Ngoladi, speaks on the release of The Good Husband, his latest movie effort and the role the government can play in stabilizing the creative industry post COVID-19. Excerpts:
What is good about the husband?
The truth is that without a good husband, there will not be a good family, society or country. Family starts from a man making a move to choose his companion. That companion must follow his vision and dream. It’s like working on set as a director. Actors and crew members pursue whatever is vision the director’s vision. It’s the same thing with a good husband. A husband who understands his role is a good husband. A husband who does not understand his role in the family is a bad husband. For there to be a good husband, it takes two to tango. The wife must create an atmosphere that enables the man to love and appreciate her. The relationship between a man and a woman is the same between Christ and the church. If there is no conducive atmosphere for Christ to come and bless the church, there won’t be a relationship. The same applies to husband and wife. When a wife is submissive and understands that the crown over her head is her husband, the man becomes the King and she, the Queen. The Good Husband movie was made to address all the issues between a man and a woman. There is no couple in the world that will not see themselves in this film. This movie addresses the issue of marriage. Marriage has no tribe or religion or race. Marriage is the only institution that God himself established. Lesser value is placed on that institution right now. That is why we decided to make this film at this time that domestic violence and divorce is so high. The Good Husband addresses those issues as it affects husband and wife. There is a good husband out there but its his wife that determines how good he will be.
Are you insinuating that it is a wife that makes a home?
Yes, it is a woman that owns the home. It’s a woman that defines a home. Before a woman moves into a man’s house, its just a house. But it becomes a home when she steps in. The man finds peace and confidence. The woman becomes his supporter in chief. A wife plays an important role in making her man, a good husband. That is what this film highlights. The position of a man in the family must be well recognized. This is not talking about a man’s world, it is to state the fact as it is. For marriage to work, the head of the family must be identified. And that head can never be the wife no matter what the situation is. Whether you are the person feeding the man or paying the bills or the man meeting his responsibility, it does not matter. What is important is that the man is established as the head of the home. God made marriage and God gave he responsibility of headship to the man. However, there are irresponsible men out there.
So, there are bad husbands?
There are bad husbands. That a marriage crumbles most of the time is from the perspective of the man. God instructed man to leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife. If a man does not give up on the woman he chose as a wife, the marriage will never break up. If a marriage crumbles, hold the man responsible because it is his responsibility to keep the marriage while it is the woman’s responsibility to make the house a home. For any marriage to fail, check the man, the man gave up. In this movie, we are calling on husbands to understand their responsibility. The man is the priest over his home. He bears the vision. If he gives up on the vision, the marriage crashes. That’s what we call ‘irreconcilable difference’. This film speaks to everybody including the pastors and clergy. Most pastors are facing challenges at home. The film cuts across social status, tribe and religion. It is a broad approach to discuss marriage. Again, I have had my fair share of broken home and I know what it feels like. There is no man that will deliberately wreck his home. Nothing kills a man’s drive like having a broken home. I have experienced it. Friends, family, colleagues, church will abandon you when your home crashes. It is a terrible situation. I ran to God and the idea for this movie was revealed to me. This is the best inspiration I have ever had when it comes to film making business. I was directly inspired to make this film.
Who are the actors that featured in this film?
We have Sam Dede, Monalisa Chinda, Francis Duru, Paul Sambo, Victor Deka, Link Edochie, so many great actors. It’s going to be in the cinemas from 13th of November 2020. We shot for the cinema market because it is an important theme. The marriage institution is under serious attack. Most troubled marriages will find a reason to give their marriage a second chance after watching this film. I am expecting both single and married audience to come see The Good Husband in the cinemas on the 13th of November.
How are you coping with the marketing and distribution?
That is one area that we need government intervention especially because coronavirus affected our industry terribly. The cinemas were shut down but they are just reopening now. We don’t know what to expect. We need government to deliberately and consciously bail out the industry.
In what way?
The records of the cinemas should be crosschecked to identify those movies that was supposed to be released before the COVID-19 lockdown. These are heavily funded projects that was tied down due to the pandemic. Film makers lost their investments. For instance, I am owing a lot of people who invested in this movie. Personally, I look forward to palliatives from the government. Nollywood is well structured to receive intervention from the federal government. It is easy to identify those film makers who were affected by the lockdown. The Good Husband was supposed to be released in March after investing so much resources. Now, I am starting afresh to promote the movie. I am looking for about 20 million naira for publicity. We need help in Nollywood. The government must realize how important the creative sector is to our economy. Apart from job creation, Nollywood is a veritable tool for government propaganda. There should be synergy between the government and the movie industry. Nollywood is good for the image laundering of the country. Bailing out Nollywood will positively project the image of Nigeria. Any government that is serious, must embrace the creative industry.