EbonyLife’s Royal Hibiscus Hotel selected as a ‘hidden gem’ by Toronto International Film Festival
Upcoming release receives impressive accolade, reserved for a handful of movies, just days before its world premiere
September 5, 2017
Lagos, Nigeria – A delightful, original production from EbonyLife Films, The Royal Hibiscus Hotel (RHH), has been recognized as a ‘Hidden Gem’ by Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Generally speaking, a ‘hidden gem’ is something that is undiscovered and of great value. At TIFF, this honour tends to given to well-made, smaller, independent productions, to ensure that they are not overlooked by audiences at the festival.
The film has its world premiere on Saturday 9th September at TIFF, with a further two public screenings on September 11th and 17th. It is the only Nigerian selection and one of just three African feature films at the festival.
Set in Lagos and London, The Royal Hibiscus Hotel tells the story of a disillusioned London chef, ‘Ope’, who returns to Nigeria and discovers that going home can bring unexpected surprises.
This is director Ishaya Bako’s second feature, following his debut, The Road to Yesterday. The cast includes some newer faces in the Nigerian film industry such as Zainab Balogun, Kenneth Okolie, Deyemi Okanlawon and O.C. Ukeje, with veteran actors Rachel Oniga, Jide Kosoko, Olu Jacobs and Joke Silva completing the ensemble. The soundtrack features a score by award-winning musician, Cobhams Asuquo, and songs by leading Nigerian artistes.
Mo Abudu, Executive Producer, is thrilled about this additional recognition. “To have our movie identified by TIFF as a ‘Hidden Gem’ is such a pleasant surprise and is further proof that good quality stories are globally viable. We hope that RHH will resonate with and be enjoyed by everyone who sees it in Toronto,” she said.
The 2017 edition of The Toronto International Film Festival will take place from September 7- 17
The Royal Hibiscus Hotel is scheduled for general release in February 2018.
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