Ghanaian actors have now become jobless, president of the Ghana Actors Guild, Samuel Fiscian has revealed.
“Basically, the ordinary actor is jobless now… Majority of our people are jobless,” he told 3News on Tuesday.
This was when some executives of the Guild paid a courtesy call on the new Chief Executive of Media General Group (owners of TV3, 3FM, 3News, Onua FM, Connect FM, Akoma FM and APL Productions), Mrs. Pearl Esua-Mensah, to congratulate her on her appointment.
Though Mr. Fiscian fell short of statistics, he claimed the joblessness of the actors in the country has been because film productions have drastically slumped primarily due to decline in the sale of local productions.
He said that low patronage of local productions has forced production companies to stop producing local content for the market, a situation he stated, has had a significant ripple effect on actors in Ghana.
“You hardly have productions going on. Even the few, which are going on, you have just a handful of people, especially those who have made it to a certain level,” he revealed.
Mr. Fiscian observed the influx of foreign productions on the market, most of which are shown on television, have contributed to the dwindling sales of local productions, but also admitted Ghanaians have developed a change in taste.
These, he admitted, presents a great challenge to the industry, and underscores the need for local industry players to up their game to neutralize the threat that the situation poses.
“We are challenged by the influx of foreign productions and we acknowledge the fact that the taste of the Ghanaian has changed,” he said.
In the midst of the challenging times, he said, “we need to up our game. We are working towards training”.
As part of the efforts being taking by the new executives to restructure the the Ghana Actors Guild, Mr. Fiscian said innovative ways would be explored in ensuring that the local industry bounces back to take up its place. “We are looking at ways and means to shore up production, standard productions,” he noted, adding that when that is done, productions churned out would appeal to Ghanaians, and television stations in the country would be interested.
Mr. Fiscian acknowledged that the media has a key role to play in the industry, stating “there’s nothing we can do without the media”.
CEO of MG Group, Mrs. Esua-Mensah agreed with Mr. Fiscian on the point that the taste of Ghanaians regarding local content, has changed but said their appetite for quality and productions that meet standards have not changed.
“Yes, you’re right that the Ghanaian taste has changed. It hasn’t changed in terms of the quality of the content; the quality of the storylines and the quality of production so we see it as a challenge that can be overcome,” she observed.
She was confident that with the level of talents in Ghana, “we can get the right story-lines and the quality of production that is needed in Ghana and beyond our bothers.
“If the actors are up to the task and also up their game, they will definitely be getting jobs from the things that we do,” she promised. She said one thing that the flagship of the MG Group, TV3 has done very well over the last two decades is to create stars who have excelled, stating, “There are a lot of stars whose careers started from TV3 and gave them the launchpad to really fly".
“So we can assure you that that our mandate still stays.We have to do Ghana; we have to portray Ghana but we have to show that Ghana can do it with the right quality and we’re willing to work with the actors to do that,” she added.