Netflix increases investment in Nigeria's film industry
8 April 2020
JOHANNESBURG - Netflix has increased its investment in Nigeria's Nollywood, where the movie industry is the second largest employer after agriculture, iAfrikan reported.
The publication said this was a boost for Nigeria's entertainment industry and that the streaming company would also give Nigerian film-makers a strategy to combat piracy.
To put the investment in motion, Netflix has ordered a six-part series, as yet untitled, that will be directed by local directors Akin Omotoso, Daniel Oriahi and CJ Obasi.
According to iAfrikan, Nollywood is worth $5.1 billion (about R94 bln) and makes up 5% of Nigeria’s GDP, and although the first Nigerian films were produced in the 1960s, it wasn’t until the 1990s and 2000s that the industry blossomed as film-makers took advantage of digital technology and internet distribution.
Nollywood film-makers have largely run an independent model for over three decades, producing about 50 movies a week.
For years, pirates have been stealing Nigerian film-makers’ profits at the end of the distribution chain by replicating and distributing films within days of VCD/DVD release.
These losses hamper the industry’s full potential and make it difficult for film-makers to attract funding for their ambitious projects.
iAfrikan said that for Nollywood to compete at the global level, it should adopt a smart, proactive approach. It said Nigerian creators and policymakers need to collaborate to make progress. Most importantly, it said, it is time for the proposed amended Nigerian Copyright Act to become law.
The publication added that the Nigerian copyright management organisations and performer rights organisations have to educate themselves and plan programmes to enforce the rights of their members.