Updated: May 28
The genesis of animation in Ghana can be traced to the late 1970s with the establishment of a production unit by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation at GBC, purposely for the production of films for civic and political education through broadcast. Animation was an additional medium of communication proposed by the Foundation.
This led to a training workshop to build the needed capacity. Amongst the first to be recruited and trained were Edward Abebrese, Annor Okai and Laign.
With the film production center being later converted to the National Film and Television Institute (NAFTI) in 1978, animation was incorporated as part of the training programs with these three playing key roles in nurturing more talents in the field. After having churned out quiet a number of trained animators for the young industry both in Ghana and West Africa, Abebrese later went ahead to become the Rector of NAFTI for a brief period (1980 to 1982)
Notable among the animation products of NAFTI are Alex bannerman, Samuel Quatey, Prof Charles DaCosta, Kwesi Apau, Dr. Ramatu Mustapha Dadzie etc.
Alex's contribution to the animation industry in the 80s and 90s with earlier works like 'Windfall', 'Don’t Waste Water' and the classic Tema Food complex piece is undoubtedly a pace setter preparing the way for the likes of Zingaro who entered the scene to keep the fire burning in the early 90s.
Thanks to these forerunners, new budding talents today can build upon the solid foundation laid to create a vibrant, profitable industry. All hands on deck for God and country
Ayu Nyarko, Sam Quatey, Alex bannerman, Dr. Ramatu Dadzie. Picture credit NAFTI