Governor Jide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, On Wednesday, October 18 marked a significant milestone by performing the groundbreaking ceremony for the ambitious $100 million Lagos Film City. This impressive project will occupy a vast 100-hectare expanse in the Ikosi-Ejinrin area of Epe Local Government and is set to foster economic growth, job creation, and investment opportunities, thanks to its innovative public-private partnership model.
The visionary Lagos Film City project, under the capable leadership of Linus Idahosa, the Executive Director of Delyork Group, aspires to emerge as a dynamic epicenter for the film industry, embracing a wide spectrum of creative components. These include film production, visual effects, scriptwriting, cinematography, editing, photography, and all the vital services that underpin the art of filmmaking.
This groundbreaking endeavor represents a collaboration between the Lagos state government and prominent players in the entertainment sector, including Delyork Creative Academy, Ebonylife Academy, and Ogidi Studios. Notably, this aligns with Governor Sanwo-Olu’s THEMES Agenda, where the second ‘E’ stands for Entertainment and Tourism.
Toke Benson-Awoyinka, the state’s commissioner for tourism, arts, and culture, expressed her enthusiasm for the Lagos Film City. She highlighted that the project’s design envisions it as an all-encompassing facility with leisure, entertainment, and learning infrastructure. The site will encompass a sprawling 100 hectares and feature state-of-the-art studios supporting television, radio, and film across all stages of production, including pre-production, production, post-production, distribution, and more.
Benson-Awoyinka emphasized, “The Lagos Film City will be the largest in Africa, not just in name but in the quality and content it offers to the creative industry. The fact that this monumental project is being undertaken through a public-private partnership is a testament to the integrity and strength of the Lagos state government’s economic policies and financing.”
Furthermore, she stressed that the Lagos Film City’s emergence underscores the commitment of the Governor Sanwo-Olu administration to invest in infrastructure and create a conducive environment for the thriving “new economy” in Lagos State. The collaboration with established industry players, such as Ebonylife Academy, Delyork, and Ogidi Studios, has also proved instrumental in nurturing talents in acting, directing, scripting, cinematography, editing, photography, and more.
In addition to the Lagos Film City, the Lagos State Government has allocated a substantial budget of N4.64 billion to enhance tourist sites throughout the year. Toke Benson-Awoyinka highlighted some of the sites that have already received upgrades, including the J.Randle Centre for Yoruba Culture and the Agia Tree project. She underscored the government’s deliberate efforts to boost the tourism sector, and these steps are starting to make a significant contribution to the state’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
At the ceremony, the Elejirin of Ejirinland, Oba Babatunde Balogun, expressed his excitement for the positive developments in his community and offered prayers and gratitude for Governor Sanwo-Olu’s leadership. He described the groundbreaking ceremony as the dawn of a new era in the Ejirin community, hailing it as a recognition of their historical significance.
Wale Anomo, chairman of Ikosi-Ejinrin Local Council Development Area, expressed his appreciation for Governor Sanwo-Olu’s choice to locate the film city in Ejinrin. He highlighted the community’s anticipation of the infrastructural prosperity and job opportunities that will result from this significant investment.
The Lagos Film City’s inception promises to revolutionize the entertainment and tourism sectors in Lagos State, putting it on the global map as a beacon of creativity and economic growth.