Greek classic, Oedipus, remade for Nigerian cinemas

The movie, the makers claim is a departure from the run-of-the mill Nollywood storylines.


In a few weeks time, a modern cinematic adaptation of classic Greek tragedy, Oedipus, entitled “The gods are still not to blame, will be birthed in Nigerian cinemas.  The film is being produced by Lagos-based Catalyst and is shot on locations in Lagos, Cote d’Ivoire and Cameroon.

The producers say they hope that when released, the movie which stars veterans like Carol King, Baba Wande, Iretiola Doyle, Akin Lewis, Dele Odule, Gabriel Afolayan and Seun Akindele, will help revive Nigeria’s disappearing literature

The gods are still not to blame retells the tragedy of Oedipus, a child who lives to fulfill the tragic prophecy that he would kill his father and marry his mother. Here, Oedipus is reprised as the jet-set military personnel, Nicholas Payne (played by director cum actor, Bayo Alawiye).

It tells the story of a child born to King Adedoyin, and while the naming ceremony is in progress, the diviner proclaims that the new baby will kill his father and marry his mother. In the process the grief-stricken mother connives with one of her maids to adopt the baby and relocate to her native Cameroon in order to avert the prophecy. 28 years later, duty calls, and the young man returns to his motherland where he would fulfill the prophecy, warts and all.

According to the director, Funke Fayoyin, the film also revolves around parent-child relationship; the concept of destiny or fate as well as love, betrayal, sacrilege and other contemporary issues.

“The idea was not only to introduce a new and significant dimension to the classic but to make it fascinating and appealing to viewers. Film production is not something that should be hurriedly done; it should be about breaking new grounds, setting standards and more importantly, giving viewers value for their money,” she says.

The director of photography, Byron Ene, also boasts that the movie is an exceptional departure from run-of-the mill Nollywood storylines.

“The gods are still not to Blame cuts across the Nigerian border, we have the best of the best; the costume is bespoke, the cinematography is top-of-the-range, the actors top-notch, the production as a whole is excellent,” he said.


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