FOR A LONG TIME, screenwriters nurtured millions of stories but were unable to share with the world due to limited resources to produce films to international standards.
It was a sigh of relief, however, when Hapa Media and the Screenwriters Association of Rwanda jointly launched “VugAfrica.rw”, Rwanda’s first-ever online marketplace initiative for producers and investors who buy the best of ideas, screenplays and screenplays of African films from professional storytellers and screenwriters. across Africa.
The platform was introduced to allow screenwriters from Africa to release and sell their screenplays to producers so that they can financially support their careers.
According to Aaron Niyomwungeri, the mastermind behind the platform, screenwriters will no longer need to archive their stories as the platform is developed not only to connect them with potential producers, but also to keep their scripts safe and protected. in accordance with intellectual property law.
“By putting their scripts on this platform, screenwriters can rest assured that their stories remain original and protected. We can have a lot of interesting scripts that can entice producers to buy,” Niyomwungeri said.
Aaron Niyomwungeri, the mastermind behind the platform
“I believe we have so many stories, but the market has been a big deal for so many years. I would love to see other screenwriters bring them to this platform so they can benefit from their creative skills,” he added.
The platform, available at vugafrica.rw, is developed in such a way that each scriptwriter creates their own account where all their scripts can be displayed along with the price of each script.
VugAfrica engages visionary screenwriters by giving them a platform to tell their stories through scripts as well as improving the world of cinema by bringing new and untold stories to the global discourse.
He is also expected to lay the foundations for a career as a screenwriter and a self-sustaining film industry in Rwanda and Africa in general.
Prospective producers will be allowed to visit the platform and select the scripts that impress them the most before making payments.
To visit the scripts, some fee will be recommended to the producers to access a given story from its synopsis to the long line.
Once the producer likes an idea for a certain script and wants to proceed with the payments, the platform administrator (admin) will connect him with the scriptwriter to negotiate the price of the script.
Niyomwungeri said many screenwriters mix their work with producing and directing films because they find it difficult to make a living writing screenplays on their own.
He said they can now focus on writing screenplays as the chances of getting the market for their stories through Vugafrica are looking promising.
“I know the difficulties that screenwriters face because I’m one of them. We can write scripts but we have a hard time finding producers who can buy them and that’s the reason why we have developed this platform to create a market for our works,” said Niyomwungeri.
Jones Kennedy Mazimpaka is one of Rwanda’s established screenwriters who has been in the film industry for the past two decades. He hailed the potential of the platform to connect screenwriters with producers, describing it as a financial boost for screenwriters not only in Rwanda but also in Africa since African filmmakers can also post their screenplays on the platform.
“It’s a good idea. Not every screenwriter can produce a movie. Some of us have so many stories that get lost because we lack funding to turn them into movies. But if the platform can helping us reach potential producers and investors, that would be a huge boost for screenwriters,” Mazimpaka told The New Times.
He did, however, suggest that some changes be made to the platform to ensure their stories are better protected and fully copyrighted.
VugAfrica, is one of the projects that benefited from the Creative Industry Recovery Fund provided last year by the Imbuto Foundation in partnership with the Ministry of Youth and Culture.