The producers of the Malayalam film said that they'd fulfilled the contractual obligations and gave Samuel a ‘mutually-agreed' remuneration.

Painful accusation Sudani from Nigeria producers deny African actors racism charge
Flix Mollywood Saturday, March 31, 2018 - 15:48

Happy Hours Entertainments, the producers of Sudani from Nigeria, have stepped in to issue an official clarification about African actor Samuel Abiola Robinson's allegation that he was underpaid for his role in the film.

Sameer Thahir and Shyju Khalid of the production house said that they had drawn up a contract with Samuel "after giving him a clear picture about the low-budget nature of the film and about the limit of remuneration we could give him. He entered into that contract after he agreed on paper with the remuneration. We gave Samuel mutually-agreed remuneration."

The production company further said that they had indeed expressed the hope that if the film became commercially successful, the team would be paid more. 

"It is a fact that the film still runs to packed houses. But it is equally true that a share of the profit would not reach us until due course of time elapses and unless the usual procedures in the film industry are completed," they said.

Acknowledging that Samuel had been "invaluable" for the film, the producers said that they have been hopeful of paying him more but added, "...we want to underline the fact this wish is motivated by an ethics outside the premises of the contractual obligations".

Responding to Samuel's allegation that he'd been underpaid because he was African, the producers calling it a "painful" accusation and said, "We exerted no pressure on Samuel to cooperate with us, if he was not satisfied with the amount we offered."

They denied there had been racist undertones to the money offered to Samuel. Sameer Tahir and Shyju Khalid further said that Samuel's allegations are prompted by what they consider as "misinterpretation of certain false information provided by some sources" and added that they hoped his friendship with them would continue.

Sudani from Nigeria hit the screens in Kerala on March 23 and has become successful at the box-office. However, one of the lead actors, Samuel, expressed discontent at his payment and took to social media to allege that he'd been underpaid because he was African. The film also has Soubin Shahir in a lead role.

Samuel has responded to the statement, attaching photographs of his contract which show that he was to have been USD 1800, which amounts to a little over a lakh. The actor also said that he'd had no idea that the film would also release in countries outside India. Further, he has alleged that he was made to stay in "questionable" places and made to eat "questionable" food during the shoot of the film. 

Samuel has also included an email he allegedly sent to the producers, detailing the demands he has if he is to participate in the film's promos in Dubai.

Read: Paid less because I'm African: 'Sudani from Nigeria' actor slams Malayalam producer\

           From people to porotta, I love Kerala: African actor Samuel of 'Sudani from Nigeria'

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