LECTURE TOPIC: “THE SCIENCE OF TALENT DISCOVERY; OPPORTUNITIES FOR SCIENCE STUDENTS IN THE NIGERIA MOVIE INDUSTRY” DELIVERED TO HND & ND 1 STUDENTS OF SCIENCE LABORATORY TECHNOLOGY OF RUFUS GIWA POLYTECHNIC, OWO, AKURE, ONDO STATE IN DECEMBER, 2015 BY: YOMI FABIYI.
When the ancient Chinese decided to live in peace, they made the Great Wall of China. They thought no one can climb in due to its height. During the first 100years of its existence, the Chinese were invaded thrice…… And every time, the hordes of enemy infantry had no need of penetrating or climbing over the wall…..because each time they need bribed the guards and came through the doors. The Chinese built the wall but forgot the character-building of the wall-guards. Thus the building of human character comes before anything else.
Our ability to meet the challenges and achieve the opportunities of our time depends in large measure on our science and engineering (S&E) enterprise. Yet, while our S&E capability is as uncertain as ever, while our nation ought to dominate the fields over the rest of the world, we have refused to genuinely invest in and grow our research and education capacities. This is the moment I choose to call Rising Above the Gathering Storm irrespective of our situation at a crossroads: For Nigeria to participate globally and compete in science and technology that are critical to achieving national goals today, we must invest in research, encourage innovation, and grow a strong, talented, and innovative science and technology workforce.
Scientific and technological innovation continues to play an essential role in catalyzing the creation of new industries, spawning job growth, and improving the quality of life in Nigeria and throughout the world. Innovation relies, in part, on individuals possessing the knowledge, skills, creativity, and foresight to forge new paths.
Science students in my opinion especially in a virgin site like Nigeria shouldn’t be looking for jobs after graduation, SCIENCE CREATE JOBS. There is therefore the need for each and every science student to develop and indefinite capacity to research and try new things.
Science looks into a new idea, develops it and you realize behind that innovation is a window of massive employment, wealth and capacity building. Could you however imagine that since after independence we were assumed to be on our own yet we still import as little as eraser, blade, sharpener and ruler. Just last week the Honourable Minister for Science and Technology, DR. Ogbonoya Onu, painfully expressed thus, “WE cannot continue to export crude oil and import refined oil, we cannot continue to export woods and import tooth-picks’ It is high time science students declared state of emergency on the obsolete policies on education and research that has continued to subject expectedly independent scholars to job seekers. Every science students should understand the very importance of trying new things, researching and experimenting. Under graduates in China are already working before the completion of their studies. I guess you know that already.
Talent hunt and discovery:
According to an informal British survey, more than three-quarters of music educators who decide which young people are to receive instruction believe that children cannot do well unless they have special innate gifts (Davis 1994). The judgment that someone is talented is believed to help explain (as distinct from merely describing) that person’s success. It is also widely assumed that the innate talent that makes it possible for an individual to excel can be detected in early childhood.
The science of talent discovery is character building. The onus is therefore on each and every science student to start thinking on what he or she can do to create jobs and discover a hidden/latent talent, hidden treasures in that industry and those natural resources. A concentration is the Nigeria Movie Industry which is my own constituency. This may sound pathetic but I must be bold to say this, SCIENCE and science students primary aim is to make life easy. They secure knowledge about the structure and behavior of the natural and physical world based on proven facts and go further to find solution and ease. And here comes the focal point of this lecture, THINGS ARE NOT EASY IN THE NIGERIA MOVIE INDUSTRY and I still don’t know why Nigeria scientist and science scholars have chosen to ignore such a viable industry. Recently I floated /founded SAVE GROUP FOUNDATION. It is an NGO created with the primary aim of proffering lasting solution to the lingering problems of the Nigeria Movie Industry, yes an NGO because the industry really needs help and a body that will synergize all major stakeholders is urgently needed. I am saddened by the continued erosion of hard work and notice that the very bane of the industry is the invasion of the industry by parasites called ‘Pirates’. This cankerworm has eaten deep into the fabrics of a very important source of revenue for the nation. Our movie MARKETERS are not finding things easy as piracy is regularly threatening them. I realize it is imperative we go back to the drawing board. In my quiet time research, I reckon the solution majorly lies with science and many new talents will be discovered and windows of employment opportunities will by all standards be available. In highlighting on the discovery and opportunities for science students in the movie industry, I shall take us through these key but untapped areas one after the other and maybe you can identify where your talent is with relations to your science knowledge:
MEDICAL EMPLOYMENT AND DISCOVERY: to shoot a movie, the PRODUCER assembles all the human and material factors of production in a place called LOCATION. Only a few productions can be done in a studio. Nevertheless, all the human and material factors must still converge and be together. Each individual I must admit do have different medical history or peculiarity. Some of these locations are relatively unknown to most of these thespians and some could react to. Under common sense, any of the actors or crew member could react to these; there could be allergy, accident or an unexpected medical emergency. In spite of all the above danger, with due respect to my colleagues as no malice is intended, it may shock you that 99.9% of movie locations are done without the presence of on- ground general medical practitioner; we have lost many great talents on set due to the fact that they couldn’t get first aid treatment. With the absence of this kind of arrangement, it may be difficult for insurance companies to insure a movie production against death or injuries of major actors and crew. Without going into details as to why this is a practice, we all will agree it is high time the medical students synergize with the movie industry in this regards.
Another area you can discover your talent is the area of dehydration and skin problems due to the high density of lights we use. Lights such as Red Heads, 2k Lights, HMI and so on can easily dehydrate and damage actors and crew skin especially in a situation where we throw caution into the winds by staying under lit equipment beyond expected time. We lack medical advice in this regards and a visit to our movie locations, run a test on those lights, this could inform and ignite an idea into developing a body cream that will help protect our skin and reduce the risks those lights poses bearing in mind our own local weather condition. This will help not just the conventional film makers but anybody that does studio work under such heavy lights.
ARTISTIC DIRECTING: It is very easy for a Psychiatrist or Clinical Psychologist to delve into the work of directing and/or major as an artistic director and certainly will be the best. The medical experience will enable such a person as a director to read the minds of cast and cough out the right interpretations. Such a science student can equally do well as screen play or casting director during auditions.
FILMING EQUIPMENTS and SOFTWARES: taking some shots or achieving an accurate post-production with relation to our own very storyline, lifestyle and culture may be an herculean task for Nigerian directors as some filming equipment and soft wares are not very much available locally except we travel abroad. It is very important in filming but sadly, just as we import little things like erasers and pencils, we rely solely on importation for most of this handmade filming equipment and soft wares. If you do a careful study of how we film and how best we could interprets some scenes, I am sure with your science knowledge, you may be the inventor of a relatively new concept or device that can be used easily by film makers and at a very affordable rate which will also be very lucrative. More so, its production will employ and create wealth; its use will further improve the quality of pictures and movies shot in Nigeria. Until this synergy on local ground starts, we are likely not to see Nigerian movies in Oscars and other top flight international film festivals. South African, Kenya and so on movies that have graced the prestigious award ceremony enjoyed in large scale the support of science students in achieving most scenes that film makers normally achieved with the aid of foreign scientists or scholars. However, we equally need improved technological device, softwares or new scientific ideas that can protect our movie MASTERS an/on during MASS DUBBING, whereby piracy will be reduced to the bearest minimal. Piracy is having a field day as we speak and they pirates our jobs even before its official release whereby making producers and marketers run into great loss and rendering investment into quality movies a nightmare. If you look inwards in these areas and proffer a lasting solution, the movie industry will survive and be taking off the life support machine. This can be done in Nigeria and certainly if you develop that attitude now.
On a last note, to know what counts and what doesn’t, you have to know what you are dedicating your life to. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity and I hope to hear from you lads very soon.