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Community Highlights: Meet Ogechi Musa of M5 Productions

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ogechi Musa.

Hi Ogechi, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Where do I begin?.. Gratitude, first. Thanks for having me and providing your platform for my voice. So, who am I?..Do we go deep or stay shallow? I’m a deep-thinker, but I’ll keep it brief: I am. I was born and raised in Connecticut by Nigerian immigrants. As a quiet child, reading and writing ignited my creativity and my diary pages became a comfortable, quiet escape. Within those pages I created worlds filled with characters that resembled everything I quietly observed and more. Above all, I’m a writer. Throughout my adolescence and early adult years, acting became a catharsis and my therapy. In college, I embarked on opportunities to bring my artistic vision to life and discovered my talent of directing and fell in love. At last, I’m a filmmaker.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
The road is never smooth when you’re forging your own path. This rocky terrain is inevitable though as a Black woman filmmaker. Here’s the thing, most career paths in America were not built for my feet to walk on, so I’ve been conditioned to overachieve to prove my place on any path that leads to success. My main struggle has been deconstructing this workaholic mindset in order to find a healthy balance of work and rest. Financing projects is always an obstacle, of course, but the ever-present challenge is staying authentic to my true self whilst navigating through industry restrictions of self-expression. I embrace all of these struggles as challenges to grow. Hopefully my forged path will become a smoother road for rising Black filmmakers to come.

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about M5 Productions?
I founded M5 Productions to create artwork that evokes empathy and to rewrite the narrative of BIPOC stories. Historically in American film, the Black image has been distorted into a portrait that does not represent the multiplicities of our journeys and aims to reinforce stereotypes. Through film, we reflect the times. If we’re not telling our own stories, who will and what will they say? The ‘M’ stands for Musa, my last name because producing a film is like raising a child; it takes an entire village to bring a life into this world and to provide genuine, continual care for it. The ‘5’ represents the close bond of my siblings and I; my tribe, my backbone. The number 5 also represents change. The production company is founded on these values reflected in its name.

M5 is incredibly proud of our first project, FRICTION. It is a feature film about a community uprising against police brutality. This film reflects the dilemma that is currently facing America: how do we heal from this country’s tainted soil of bigotry, violence, and racism? How do we seek justice from a system that is discriminatory by design? How will we move forward? We’re also extremely excited for our next feature project: a documentary about gentrification and artist survival in Cleveland, Ohio (THE HODGE) Also in post-production, we have a short film that tells the tale of a homeless man in L.A. battling mental health disorders(MATEO&CLIFF). We are conscious storytellers and we’re looking for sponsors and producing partners for our future projects in pre-production! Please contact us if you’re interested in supporting or collaborating.

If you had to, what characteristic of yours would you give the most credit to?
My passion. My passion for change drives every step of my creative process. It’s an infectious, selfless energy that is genuine. Passion ignites inspiration and gathers authentic support. I can’t fake it; I care deeply about my work because I truly believe in it. I believe this work will inspire change. Socially conscious storytelling is rewarding, but it’s also emotionally taxing. Passion is the heartbeat that keeps it alive.

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

  1. R.A.W Photo Studios
  2. The Hodge Documentary BTS photo by Lolita Wilson (2020)
  3. “Midst” LGTBQ+ short film BTS by Darren Cole (2015)
  4. “The Hodge” documentary BTS photo by Adisa Duke(2018)
  5. “Friction” feature film still photo by Darren Cole
  6. “Friction” still photo
  8. –.9 “Mateo&Cliff” BTS (2019)
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