What to Expect from Nollywood This December
December has become Nollywood’s blockbuster release month and these are the major projects to look out for this December.
December has become Nollywood’s blockbuster release month. A classic case of saving the best for the last as cinemas have come to expect a rising number of watchers, evident in the last two years with Funke Akindele’s Omo Ghetto: The Saga and Battle On Buka Street.
On the streamers’ end, Inkblot Productions’s YA school drama Far From Home swooped viewers’ attention in 2022 and ushered in a new set of actors.
This year, four major films are to grace the cinemas while the big three streamers — Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Showmax — await significant releases too.
These are the major projects to look out for this December.
Directed by Kayode Kasum, Afamefuna is a story about the Igbo apprenticeship system. It explores how this cycle of trade and learning ensures the succession of wealth through the knowledge passed from successful businessmen to their apprentices.
The film stars veteran actor Kanayo O. Kanayo alongside other actors like Stan Nze, Segun Arinze, Alex Ekubo and Atlanta Bridget Johnson. There is also 2023’s breakout star Paul Nnadiekwe, who plays the titular character in his teens. After screening to rapturous applause at the recently concluded Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF), the film will be in cinemas on the first of December.
A Tribe Called Judah
After establishing her new production company, Funke Akindele Network (FAN), the star actress starts a new era with the hotly anticipated A Tribe Called Judah. Directed by the duo of Akindele and Adeoluwa Owu, the film follows a mother and her five boys, who decide to rob a small-town mall to aid their mother.
The film is led by Akindele, who plays Jedidah Judah, alongside heavyweights such as Faithia Williams and Nse Ikpe Etim. The fivesome of Timini Egbuson, Jide Kene Achufusi, Uzee Usman, Tobi Makinde and Olumide Oworu play Jedidah’s five boys. The film, distributed by Film One Entertainment, is expected to be a third December blockbuster in a row from Akindele.
It opens in cinemas on December 15.
Toyin Abraham Ajeyemi is the second woman in the December blockbuster race with Malaika. The film, which Steve Sodiya directs, tells the story of a woman who struggles with infertility and, despite having a supportive family, embarks on a spiritual journey to wholeness.
Abraham plays the lead character and brings the delightful Emeka Ike back to our screen after a long acting hiatus. The star-packed film also includes Odunlade Adekola, Adebayo Ridwan, and Ibrahim Chatta.
Malaika will be in cinemas from December 22.
Ada Omo Daddy
Mercy Aigbe is betting big this December, slugging it out with Akindele and Abraham for the festive traffic. Her film Ada Omo Daddy is a star-studded project that tells a story of love and cross-cultural family drama centred around Ada (Omowumi Dada), who gets engaged, but this love faces several obstacles.
The film also features A-list actors like Sola Sobowale, Charles Okafor, Chinwetelu Agu, Dele Odule, and new Nollywood faces like Tomi Ojo, Taiwo Peters, and Phyna.
The trailer release on the 27th of November elicited a massive reaction quite akin to that of Kemi Adeyinka’s The Wedding Party in 2016. According to Aigbe, this film intends to unify the Igbo and Yoruba cultures and to show that both cultures can live in harmony.
Directed by Adebayo Tijani and Akay Mason, Ada Omo Daddy hits the big screens on December 15.
Besides the theatrical releases, the streamers have their own December lineup, which is quite exciting.
The Netflix original from Charles Okpaleke’s Play Network Studios is a deviation from their usual remake projects. It follows the story of six friends who get mixed up in a crossfire and decide to flee to South America as stowaways on a shipping vessel as threatening events heighten in their Niger Delta hometown. Moses Inwang directs Blood Vessel which stars David Ezekiel, Jide Kene Achufusi, and Adaobi Dibor.
It is out on Netflix on December 8.
WAR: Wrath and Revenge
War: Wrath and Revenge is an offshoot of the popular Ebonylife Studios’ TV show, Sons of the Caliphate, and is set to arrive on Netflix later this month.
The story explores the charismatic Nuhu Bula, who vies for the position of governor and his wife, Binta’s ruthless ambition to stop at nothing to see her husband gain his political role. However, things take a different turn when Binta discovers Nuhu’s intention to take a second wife. The series stars Mofe Duncan, Rahama Sadau, Yakubu Mohammed and Ayoola Ayolola.
WAR comes on Netflix on December 28.
Breath of Life
Exploring faith, love and family, BB Sasore’s Breath of Life revolves around a clergyman who journeys to rekindle his faith after losing everything and will now lean on his house help to find himself and his faith again.
The film, which premiered extravagantly earlier this month as the official closing film at AFRIFF, stars Wale Ojo, Sam Dede, Chimeze Imo, and Genoveva Umeh.
Breath of Life comes to Prime Video on December 15.
Following a beloved first season, the Showmax original telenovela is set to return for its second season. Set within the backdrop of the gold mining industry, Wura tells the story of the multifaceted Wura Amoo-Adeleke, who ruthlessly runs a mining company, Frontline Gold Mine, but is also the perfect wife and mother.
The titular Wura is played by Scarlet Gomez, who landed an AMVCA nomination earlier this year for her performance. She is joined by veterans such as Yomi Fash-Lanso, Ego Sings and Carol King. There are also new stars, including Martha Ehinome, Iremide Adeoye, Miracle Gabriel, Ray Adeka and Toluwani George.
Wura returns on Showmax on December 4.
Agu is a new six-part Original series from Shomwax. The show, which brings a supernatural twist to legal drama, follows an estranged father and his daughter on opposite sides of a murder case. Directed by the AMVCA award-winning director, Anis Halloway, Agu is led by Kanayo O. Kanayo, Nonso Odogwu, and Ruby Okezie. Ireti Doyle, More Duncan and Linda Ejiofor play supporting roles.
Agu airs on Showmax from December 14.
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