May 16, 2016 By Augustine Sankoh & N’fa Alie Koroma
Sierra Leone’s leading multimedia company, Premier Media Group, has offered a return air ticket and movie contract to the winner of the reality TV show competition –Sierra Leone Next Movie Star, Kai Bockarie Saquee.
Saquee received an international movie contract to The Gambia to act alongside one of Sierra Leone’s prolific actor, Mr. Desmond Finney who departs the shores of Sierra Leone on Tuesday and will also be exposed to stakeholders in the movie industry in the sub region.
It will be Saquee, also a staff of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, who will make his first debut in An Isatu Bokum’s film titled ‘Beyond Greed.’
Sierra Leone’s Next Movie Star is an in-house reality TV show competition that hosted 17 participants from across the country in Makeni city.
Whilst handing over the return air ticket and other allowances, the Managing Director of Premier Media Group, Dr. Julius Spencer, said the Next Movie Star project was not a Premier Media project, but the involvement of Desmond Finney has made the company to get involved.
“We got involved when we learnt that the NMS winner did not receive all his prizes,” Dr. Spencer said.
He said the company got to understand that the winner did not receive all what he was promised and that the company was concerned that such project should not die, adding that that was why Premier Media decided to assist.
“We are going to provide you with a return air ticket to The Gambia where you are expected to take part in a movie to broaden your experience. You will work with other Sierra Leoneans not just to get the experience, but to also make contacts for future projects,” Dr. Spencer told Mr. Saquee.
“Going forward, Premier Media will get involve, but it will be at a different level compared to the first one that was done,” he said.
He encouraged Saquee to bring back something that he can share with other young people in the country, while emphasizing that the potential of the creative industry in the country would help to reduce unemployment of young people and develop the economy.
He promised that his company will again get involved in the movie business in the country.
Kai Bockarie Saquee won the star prize of Le 5,000,000 plus a movie contract to The Gambia, whilst Victoria M. Emehwas, the first runner up, and Dicys K. George, the second runner up.
“My journey in the Next Movie Star is now complete with Saquee going out of the country,” Desmond Finney, the executive producer of the project, stated.
“Saquee is talented and has the ability that we discovered during their 3-month stay in the celebrity house. I will keep pushing all those who were in the house in Makeni to expose them to more opportunities,” he said.
Finney said he got support from the UN Women, Chinese Embassy, and Gibril Sesay, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, to organize the event, noting that all young people need in the country is to get the support to pursue their dreams.
He said there are cameras all over the house except for the bathrooms. He furthered that they were against bad behaviour, adding that the project was partly sponsored by UN Women who were meticulous about gender respect.
He said the initiative was geared towards finding people they can be able to groom and eventually stand out in the movie industry, adding that this is one way in which the industry can grow and create recognized faces that can be the identity of the industry in the country.
The winner, Kai Bockarie Saquee, who said he drew his acting inspiration from his childhood days in church, commended Premier Media and Desmond Finney for standing by his word, adding that this signals that the future will be stronger.
He pledged to make Sierra Leone proud when he goes to The Gambia.