BBC News – Making a fortune by distributing Nigerian films online
Jason Njoku studied chemistry at university and would probably be working as a scientist had he not thought of a magic formula that he has translated into a huge success: Nigerian films plus online distribution equals big money.
It all started when he realised that his mother sometimes found it difficult to get the latest Nigerian “Nollywood” films in London and he reasoned that many other people around the world would be in the same boat.
The company that he put into motion in December 2010, Iroko Partners (formerly Nollywood Love), has become the largest distributor of Nigerian movies and music.
“We’re the first guys to actually legally reach out in Lagos to the production houses, the owners of the movies and negotiate and sign deals with these guys so they can finally get remunerated for their hard efforts,” Mr Njoku told the BBC’s series African Dream.
“Primarily, Nigeria’s movie distribution has been via DVD so we’ve basically created another way for them to make money. They’re very very happy about that.”
Fifty films a week
Nollywood is the second largest film industry in the world by volume and its estimated annual revenue is $590m (£364m).
The low-budget films, often involving love-triangles and/ or witchcraft, are hugely popular across the continent.
According to data from Iroko Partners, approximately 50 movies are produced each week and they cost $25,000-$70,000 to make.
Strange Random Film Quote:
Nobody will ever notice that. Film-making is not about the tiny details. It’s about the big picture. – Ed Wood
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