The highly anticipated movie adaptation of the acclaimed novel I Do Not Come To You By Chance, produced by The Entertainment Network (T.E.N) and directed by the talented Ishaya Bako premiered at the Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF) on Thursday, 9th November 2023. The film, an adaptation of the bestselling novel by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani, was met with enthusiastic applause and accolades from the audience clinching the Audience Choice Award.

I Do Not Come To You By Chance is a captivating and thought-provoking narrative that delves into the world of family, crime, and morality. This gripping story follows the life of a young man who is unwittingly drawn into the world of cybercrime in a quest to secure his family’s future. The film’s intricate storytelling and stellar performances have left a lasting impression on the film festival attendees.

The film boasts a stellar cast, including Paul Nnadiekwe, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Jennifer Eliogu, Emeka Nwagbaraocha and Beverly Osu, who skillfully embody the characters from the novel, adding depth and authenticity to the narrative. The movie’s premiere at AFRIFF marked a significant milestone, celebrating the fusion of literature and film in a way that is both entertaining and thought-provoking.

Writer-director, Ishaya Bako; Producer, Chioma Oyenwe; and C0-producer, Ricardo Monastier

Told in English and Igbo, the movie, directed by Ishaya Bako, offers a fresh perspective on contemporary African cinema and its ability to tackle pressing social issues. Producer Chioma Onyenwe added, “Adapting such a beloved novel was both a challenge and an honour. We aimed to stay true to the essence of the book while adding a visual dimension that enhances the storytelling. The positive response from the AFRIFF audience is incredibly rewarding”

Chika Anadu, one of the writers, added, “I had a rewarding writing experience, thrilled to see the talented cast and crew bring the story to life and excited to share our interpretations of this powerful story with the world”.

“I read the book I Do Not Come To You By Chance a little after it was released and was captivated by the story, the larger-than-life characters and the ironically real and down-to-earth nature of the world. It is a family drama of an ‘everyman’ who falls into a life of crime by circumstance but stays in it by choice,” said Ishaya Bako.  “I Do Not Come To You By Chance” is a universal story. The producers and I put a lot of care and thought into the development and production of the film, and I think our adaptation of I Do Not Come To You By Chance beautifully reflects the intersection of Nigerian literature and film.”

The cast of I Do Not Come To You By Chance

The movie adaptation of I Do Not Come To You By Chance continues to captivate audiences, sparking conversations about family dynamics, societal expectations, and the pursuit of success. As the film prepares for wider release, fans can anticipate an engaging and unforgettable cinematic experience that stays faithful to the essence of Nwaubani’s acclaimed work.

About The Entertainment Network (T.E.N)

The Entertainment Network is a film/TV production and distribution company founded in 2015 by Genevieve Nnaji and Chinny Carter. It was set out to tell artist-driven, authentic African stories. Notable projects include the Africa Magic Viewers Choice award-winning drama Road to Yesterday, Netflix’s first original Nigeria Film and the National submission for the 92nd Academy Awards.

About Ishaya Bako

Ishaya’s passion for filmmaking cuts across fiction and documentary narratives. He studied filmmaking at the London Film School, where he graduated with a distinction, and has since gone on to direct over a dozen short films and two award-winning documentaries – ‘Fuelling Poverty’ and ‘Silent Tears’. His films have been screened at film festivals in Seattle, Durban, New York, Toronto, Lagos, and Clermont-Ferrand.

Ishaya’s feature film debut was in 2015 with the drama, ‘Road to Yesterday’ which won the Best Film (West Africa) at the 2016 Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards (AMVCA). His second feature, ‘The Royal Hibiscus Hotel’, is a romantic comedy that premiered at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival, and he was one of the writers of ‘Lionheart’, which also premiered in Toronto in 2018.  He directed the political thriller ‘4th Republic’, and his latest project is ‘Chance’, an adaptation of the novel ‘I Do Not Come to You by Chance’ by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani.

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