Nigeria Oscars selection committee’s chairman Chineze Anyaene-Abonyi steps down

Chineze Anayene-Abonyi Nigerian Official Oscar Selection Committee (NOSC) chairman

Chairman of the Nigerian Official Selection Committee (NOSC) for the Best International Feature Film (IFF) category of the Oscars Chineze Anyaene-Abonyi has stepped down.

A statement made available to QEDNG on Monday said Mrs Anyaene-Abonyi is moving on to other opportunities in life “days after she secured Oscars’ re-approval of the NOSC.”

The statement added that new leadership of the NOSC will be announced in due course.

“Under Chineze’s two-term steadfast leadership, the committee has transformed into a beacon of hope and standard befitting of Nigerian filmmakers aspiring to compete in the IFF category of the Oscars,” the statement said.

The NOSC was rocked by an internal crisis last year following a decision not to submit a film for the Oscars.

Femi Adebayo’s King of Thieves, Biyi Bandele’s Eleshin Oba: The King’s Horseman and Kunle Afolayan’s Anikulapo were shortlisted for selection for the Oscars but the committee did not submit any of them.

The ensuing crisis led to the resignation of some members of the committee and the leak of a video of one of the committee’s meetings.


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The NOSC calls its chairman’s exit the end of an era, “characterized by unwavering dedication to standard, professionalism and remarkable legacies.”

 “In recent years, NOSC’s mission evolved from merely submitting films to promoting and fostering the creation of high-quality Nigerian film entries. The focus shifted towards encouraging a collaborative effort within the industry, where personal interests were set aside for the greater good of the Nigerian Film Industry,” Anyaene-Abonyi stated.

The 39-year-old filmmaker constituted the NOSC in 2012 and received approval from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) as the organisation to collect, screen and vote entries that would represent Nigeria in the IFF category.

The NOSC submitted Genevieve Nnaji’s Lionheart in 2019 but the film was eventually disqualified for not meeting the non-English dialogue criteria.

In 2021, Desmond Ovbiagele’s The Milkmaid made history as the first Nigerian film to be approved by the Academy to compete in the IFF category of the 93rd Academy Awards but did not make the final shortlist.