I have always been grateful for the opportunity to live in this beautiful rainbow nation – Anish

Folorunsho Oluwasegun Opeyemi popularly known as ‘Anish’, for those who may not know his Yoruba names. He is the founder of Anish Media a Johannesburg-based video production company with international experience and footprints.

Established in 2013, they have taken a wide array of video productions from television, documentaries, film, and tv commercial shoots. Anish shared his journey to filmmaking, passion for storytelling, and living in South Africa with us in this feature.

“The name Anish has become more than an AKA but a brand. I have had the name Anish for over two decades now and it is safe to say that Anish is my name. The name Anish is of an Indian origin, but more on that some other time,” said Folorunsho.

“Now back to the main question, who am I? I like to refer to myself as an African storyteller/filmmaker, an entrepreneur who sees gold in dirt places. I am a believer in Christ, a Husband, a Father, easy-going, honest, down-to-earth, ambitious & a patriotic Nigerian living in South Africa. I think that pretty much sums up who I am,” he added.

WHERE DID I GROW UP?
I grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa if what you meant is me becoming a man…lol. But if you meant where I was born & raised, I was born in the city of Ibadan and raised between Ibadan & Lagos state. My Primary & Tertiary educations were between these two cities.

HOW DID I GET INTO THE FILM INDUSTRY
Wow! Long story. I think the industry found me. So as a little boy, I used to sketch with pencils and make a story reel into scrolls. I remember the older folks used to say back then “This boy is going to be an artist” little did I know destiny beckons.

Another aspect that shaped my journey as a storyteller is watching Indian films from a top loader VHS player from our neighbor’s house or from a public film viewing session. If you grew up in the hood, you will be familiar with those public viewings (An old projector and large white plain clothe) Those were epic moments in my childhood days. While other kids were fascinated about playing football, I would be looking for those public viewings & neighbours with VHS player.

Well, fast forward to when I had to make a career decision. By this time there was no career advisor, Nigeria’s economic situation was the only career advisor we all had in the late 90s(Hoping things have changed for the better). So I studied economics in tertiary and started working at an insurance company in Lagos. But my love for storytelling never left me as I was part of the drama and media team in my local church. It was in my church that I had the opportunity to express my talent and that was where my journey in the industry began. I later resigned & focused on media fully and ended up getting formal training and ended up working in a few production houses and television stations in Lagos, Nigeria. My zest to tell African stories led me to come to South Africa.

Anish teaching the younger generations about filmmaking in Namahadi, Free State, South Africa

FILM PROJECTS
As you know, the brand Anish Media has made films and documentaries for the local television stations in South Africa in the past. This year is no different, we are working on more films & documentaries meant to showcase on DSTV, etv, show max.

What is new is that we want to try the Video on Demand platforms. Starting with YouTube, we have a web series in the pipeline, we will be starting production in few weeks’ time.

We also have major productions lined up in the 2nd quarter of 2022 meant for giant VODs like Netflix, Amazon, Showmax.

So, what we are releasing in the next few weeks is that we are re-opening our studio in Randburg, very close to Multichoice office after working from home for almost 2years(thanks to covid).

Anish media production

WHAT DO I DO WHEN AM NOT WORKING
Honestly, I am always working. My brain is forever creating. You will be shocked to know that I get film stories from my dreams. But if what you mean is my enjoyable distraction from work, then I enjoy spending time with my family, my wife & children, I love daydreaming…oh! I enjoy my me moments gan ni, I love watching movies (I can never get tired of those journeys, the adventures movie sends us on) I also love travelling….I travel alot.

WHAT IS IT LIKE TO BE A NIGERIAN LIVING IN SOUTH AFRICA
Honestly, it has been an amazing experience, South Africa is my home now. You will recall that I mentioned earlier that South Africa is where I became a man. Besides the common challenges thrown at us as a foreigner living in South Africa and indeed as a Nigerian in South Africa, I have always been grateful for the opportunity to live in this beautiful rainbow nation.

Click here to view some of Anish Media’s production

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