The film industry is very competitive at the international and local scene. To excel in this industry requires skills and creativity combined with hard work and dedication. Some Nigerian-born film makers are making their mark in the movie industry especially at the international scene as screen writers, directors, producers or actors. Their movies have also received recognition from reputable bodies. One of these Nigerian-born film makers doing marvelously ell in the international film industry is Pascal Atuma, a reputable actor, screen writer and film producers whose works received international recognition.
Who is Pascal Atuma?
Pascal Atuma is a Canadian/Nigerian actor, screenwriter, film producer, film director, and comedian. He was born in Umuahia, Abia State, Nigeria in 1972.
Early Life and Education
Pascal had his secondary education at Government College Umuahia after which he proceeded to the University of Port Harcourt (Uniport) in Rivers State for a degree programme. Pascal moved to the United States in 1995 after graduating from Uniport. He initially tried pursuing a career as a civil engineer before deciding to go for a career in the entertainment industry. He was also awarded a Certificate in Entrepreneurship Specialization from the University of Pennsylvania, in the United States.
In the US, Pascal attended the Kim Dawson Acting College in Dallas, Texas, and graduated in 2002. He tried some projects in theater before relocating to Hollywood. With the help of fellow Nigerian writer/producer/director Michael Ajakwe Jr., Pascal made a successful transition into Los Angeles’ highly competitive world of entertainment. Under the tutelage of his mentors — Michael Ajakwe Jr., and his godfather in the business Ayuko Babu, who is the founder and executive director of the Pan African Film Festival — Pascal has blossomed into a creative and talented professional.
Pascal is very successful today as a comedian-turned-actor, writer, producer and director added to his credits. As a director, he’s helmed most of his seven movie productions – that is, “The Trace” (coming soon), “Who Is the Man?” “Okoto the Messenger,” “My American Nurse” and its sequel, “My American Nurse 2.” His breakout directorial debut, “My American Nurse,” premiered in the United States at the 2006 Pan African Film Festival. Its sequel, My American Nurse 2, also premiered at the Pan African Film Festival. As an actor, he’s starred in many of his own productions, as well as other Nollywood projects, including “Through the Glass,” “The Other Side of Love,” “Faithfulness” and “Secret Past.” Pascal is the CEO/Chairman TABIC Record Label which is a label dedicated to the less privileged but the talented in Africa.
Pascal’s films have been recognized at film festivals. Five of his films have been official selections of the Pan African Film Festival and four in Black Harvest International Festival of Film and Video. “My American Nurse 2,” was released into the North American market (USA and Canada) in 2010 and quickly became a top selling African movie in the States and Canada. His other films “Only in America” and “Hurricane in the Rose Garden” were released worldwide by Maverick Entertainment. In 2007, Hurricane in the Rose Garden received an honorable mention in the Pan African Film Festival. Pascal Atuma served as a keynote speaker at UCLA’s Fifty Years of African Writing: Novels, Filmmaking, Criticism Seminar on February 14, 2011.
Very few film makers from Nigeria excel abroad. This places Pascal in the distinguished class of Nigerian-born film maker with impressive record in the international scene. Paschal is an inspiration to several upcoming young film makers in Nigeria.