By Taiwo Okanlawon
The Nigerian film industry appears to be recovering fast from the crippling effect of COVID-19 pandemic, with cinemas long open and film production back to speed.
The Industry is a significant part of the Arts and Entertainment sector that has continued to contribute to Nigeria’s GDP.
Here are some of the movies selling fasting in the cinemas which are mostly released in 2021, only the highest-grossing film in the industry, and 4th were released last year.
1. Omo Ghetto: The Saga
The nearly-three-hours long movie which hit the cinemas on the 25th of December, 2020 is a follow-up to the 2010-released blockbuster, Omo Ghetto.
The movie chronicles the story of a gang of friends who call themselves ‘Askamaya Bees’, led by Lefty (played by Funke Akindele), a ghetto-bred woman who finds herself falling in love, an act which is in contrast to the ‘code of the streets’.
The star-studded movie also features appearances by Chioma Akpotha, Eniola Badmus, Bimbo Thomas, Timini Egbuson, Nancy Isime, Yemi Alade, Mercy Aigbe, Deyemi Okanlawon and Zubby Michael, among other Nollywood stars.
The movie generated N189.4 million during its first week of release and a record N99.9 million in its opening weekend. It went on to become the highest-grossing Nollywood movie of all time.
Four months since its release, no title has come close. The current numbers is N636,129,120.
However, April saw a rise in figures with the Niyi Akinmolayan directed ‘Prophetess’ which is currently at N108 million in its fourth week.
The comedy starring Toyin Abraham takes the top spot for 2021 with N108,416,600 as the highest-grossing movie but number 16 of all time. The comedy has received positive reviews since its Easter day opening.
It also stars Lateef Adedimeji, Muyiwa Ademola, Tina Mba, Ronke Oshodioke, Deyemi Okanlawon, Uzor Arukwe, Kehinde Bankole, Kunle Remi and Big Brother Naija season four housemate, Seyi Awolowo.
3. Breaded Life
‘Breaded Life’ follows the story of a spoit brat who falls in love with an uneducated bread seller. The romantic comedy premieres in cinemas on April 16.
Directed by Biodun Stephen, the title is impressively climbing the ranks with N32,702,150 in its second week. The movie stars Timini Egbuson in the lead role alongside Bimbo Ademoye, Tina Mba, and Bisola Aiyeola.
4. Namaste Wahala
Namaste Wahala is a Nigerian cross-cultural romantic comedy film produced, written, and directed by Hamisha Daryani Ahuja on her directorial debut.
The film, whose title translates in Hindi and Nigerian pidgin as ‘Hello trouble’, tells the tale of a Nigerian woman who falls in love with an Indian investment banker living in Lagos. The young couple faces series of challenges – including their families – to be together.
The 110-minute film stars Indian actor Ruslaan Mumtaz and Nigerian actress Ini Dima-Okojie in the lead roles.
Mainly shot in English, the movie had a production team of more than 60 people across India and Nigeria. Production was completed before lockdowns made making movies difficult; the original release date was April.
Inspired by true events, the Kayode Kasum directed and Toluwani Obayan written comedy follows the story of residents of a close who take on an amateur heist after falling prey to a Ponzi Scheme.
The feature is produced by Vincent Okonkwo and distributed by Filmone. It stars Zubby Michael, Uzoamaka Aniunoh, Timini Egbuson, Jide Kosoko, Chinyere Winifred, Broda Shaggi, Tope Tedela among others. It’s currently at N31,309,150 in the box-office.
.6. The Therapist
The Hedge productions picture directed by Kayode Kasum centers on the story of a woman who must make drastic decisions before her marriage leaves her in a messy divorce. It stars Rita Dominic in a lead role alongside Mokeme, Michelle Dede, Toyin Abraham, Shaffy Bello, Tope Tedela, Anthony Monjaro and Anee Icha. The movie is distributed by Genesis.
7. The Razz Guy
The Razz Guy is a 2021 Nigerian comedy-drama film directed by Udoka Oyeka, written by Egbemawei Sammy produced by Trino Motion Pictures. It was released across Cinemas on March 19, 2021
The movie follows the story of a senior executive whose arrogance and highhandedness earns him a curse that makes him lose his ability to speak proper English ahead of a crucial international business merger deal. He must either find a way to lift the curse and secure the deal or resign to his fate.
The lead actor Nosa ‘Lasisi Elenu’ Afolabi is in his first lead role in a feature film. Others are Adeyemi Nosa Afolabi, Nancy Isime, Omotunde Adebowale David.
8. La Femme Anjola
La femme Anjola is a psychological-thriller film noir about a young male stock broker whose life is turned upside down when he falls for a femme fatale married to a wealthy gangster.
It is a film noir psychological thriller which stars Rita Dominic and Nonso Bassey. It was shot in locations in Lagos, Nigeria, and Cape Town, South Africa
The movie was originally billed for release in 2020 but was postponed due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and was later released on 19 March 2021, and It’s currently at N20,089,870 in the box-office.
The Esiri brothers directed feature film recently made its theatrical release which has met with critical acclaim.
The film follows the stories of Mofe, a factory technician and Rosa, a hairdresser and their quest for a better life as immigrants.
It stars Jude Akuwudike, Temi Ami-Williams, Cynthia Ebijie, Sadiq Daba, Tomiwa Edun, Jacobs Alexander, Chioma ‘Chigul’ Omeruah, Lala Akindoju and premieres in cinemas on April 23.
In fourth place is box-office newcomer, ‘Eyimofe’. The movie has so far grossed N1,059,500. Following its successful festival tour.
10. The Wait
The Yemi Morafa directed faith-based film premieres in cinemas on April 30.
“The Wait” follows the lives of different individuals and families as they try to navigate the disappointments and obstacles of life while waiting for their moment in the sun. It’s about the lives of two couples, a job seeker, and a passionate doctor, intertwined in a tale of patience and redemption.
Its star-studded cast include Nse Ikpe-Etim, Deyemi Okanlawon, Kate Henshaw, Joke Silva, Jimmy Odukoya, Chimezie Imo and Meg Otanwa.
This emotional and suspense-filled thriller will keep you at the edge of your seat from start to finish.